Education today commonly consists of technology whether it is through the use of a computer for a powerpoint or the use of a tablet for a comprehensive game. It is the way that you use technology that determines if you are a consumer or a creator. In this blog post I will be talking about different aspects of the question: How are learners exploring subject matter through creation rather than through consumption? and share different examples of how some classrooms are making the change to allow their students to become creators.
When looking up “Creator vs. Consumption” on Google I found an interesting blog post by Lauren Watt where she interviews different people in her company on how they are trying to be more of a creator instead of a consumer. This generation consists of convenience. You can order your groceries online and get them delivered to your door, you can chat with friends on FaceTime instead of meeting them face to face and you can have strangers run your errands all through the use of technology. Do you want to be a consumer and take the path of convenience or do you want to take the path of creation and go to the grocery store, and meet your friend at Starbucks instead of FaceTiming in bed? Lauren interviewed the general manager of Darling, Katherine Warnock, and Katherine makes a key point of how she has learned that she needs to let go of her everyday agenda every once in a while in order to allow authentic human interaction to happen. This is a great example of how being a creator outside of the classroom can impact people around you in a positive way.
When typing in “Genius Hour” in the search bar it came up with an interesting article about how a librarian gives students the opportunity to create their own passions and interests by participating in a tinkering lab. A tinkering lab is where the librarian sets up many different small projects that the students are allowed to participate in and they are forced to think outside the box and use their creativity. The purpose of this lab is to get students accustomed to problem solving by having them complete different projects hands on. The librarian also creates different forms of seating like bean bags, chairs, tables, floor space, and gaming chairs so each student can find their comfortable space to get their creativity flowing. The librarian also provides them with a supply station with paper, markers, etc. so they can draw and write down what they are thinking. This is a prime example of how students become creators rather than consumers because they are encouraged to participate in problem-solving games hands on and they are given the opportunity to draw and create what they want with the supply station that is provided and the different seating environments.
When looking up “Creativity: Genius hour” in google a blog popped up. This blog interviews different teachers and gets their perspective on genius hour and how they believe it helps their students. A fourth grade teacher mentioned how he loved to grow his students because by the time they become eighth graders they are able to become their own advocates because of their confidence in themselves and in what they are capable of doing. Other teachers believe that Genius Hour fosters an entrepreneurial spirit in their students and allows their students to create different things during independent study and genius hour time. Allison LaFalce’s fourth grade classroom is a great example of how the teacher allowed her students to create rather than consume. She asked all of her students to write down on a piece of paper about all of the things that they “wondered or were thinking” about. Most of her students were curious about how candy was made so she had the kids conduct a pseudo-science experiment and then they sold all of the homemade candy to at a school showcase and all proceeds went to making a new playground.