Educational advisor Ken Robinson says “creativity is as important in education as literacy and we should treat it with the same status.”
I agree and I’ve found an easy way to boost each child’s natural creativity, every day, in the classroom.
What It Is: A table in the classroom for exploring and experimenting that I call The Inspiration Table
Who It’s For: All students, all kids
What You’ll Need: Whatever supplies you have in the classroom that can be used to create something, scissors, glue, a lot of paper, stamps, stickers, crayons, and whatever else you want to put out.
I have a rotation schedule in my classroom to accommodate all ability levels and one of the rotations consists of a few activities at the Inspiration Table. After educational instruction, they are set free for the last 15 minutes to dig into the supplies and make whatever their mind can think up.
I have been BLOWN AWAY by what they are able to create when given the freedom consistently. WIth paper, my students began making intricate superheroes with decorated costumes and attached capes, all out of white paper and glue. I’ve watched them make castles, crowns, communities of paper people, paper airplanes– I even began looking up instructions on how to make more complicated airplanes when the basic ones became too easy for them.
Last year, I saved some of the most remarkable creations and curated an art show in which each student had their own exhibit full of their unique creations! I think there’s an important place in the day for teacher or parent-led crafts, as well as this type of artistic freedom, at home and in the classroom. The Inspiration Table is just one specific way I’ve found to do it.
After the innovation I’ve seen, I enthusiastically encourage time set aside for this type of self-exploration and creativity, you and the children will be pleasantly surprised at what comes out of it!
If you’ve found other ways to promote artistic expression and creativity in your children, email it to me at firstname.lastname@example.org!