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Creative Competition

The idea that competition can be based on creativity and ideas rather than on who finishes first or who has the correct idea. Creating classroom activities for children to engage and use their imagination to create concepts for their answers.

Photo of Alisha Monnette
14 11

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Both inside and outside the classroom, competition is always present. Students are pressured from teachers as well as peers to finish assignments hastily, there is only one right answer, the first one is the winner and everyone else loses; these factors in what we call "success" can sometimes bring a child's confidence down causing students to quit trying, they begin to doubt themselves and other negative effects of constantly "losing". My idea is to create in-class activities that allow competition in a creative way by choosing winners based on how many creative ideas they can come up with and not who finishes the quickest or who has the prettiest idea. For example, an art activity where you give each student 20 popsicle sticks, string, and glue and tell them they have 30 minutes to create as many different things as possible. This gives them the motivation to be imaginative because they will feel like they have the freedom and power to create their own rules in a sense. This can also be integrated in a reading assignment, having students read a story and then splitting them up in groups and allowing them to come up with multiple ideas for how to solve the main problem. This can get students actively engaged and it is still a means of competition yet it is positive and creative and allows for more students to be "winners"!

In this challenge, we want to create ideas with young people, not for them. Outline how you’re planning to involve young people or other end-users (parents, teachers, etc) in designing, iterating or testing your idea during the Ideas phase.

Young people and teachers are the main focus in this activity, without support from teachers I do not think this idea is possible. Parents can also be involved too if they want to engage their child in home activities, but I think starting in the classroom will be most beneficial. Teachers will be the facilitators of these activities and the children will be the participants.

How might you envision your idea spreading across geographies or cultures so that it inspires young people around the world to cultivate their creative confidence?

With this idea starting in the classroom, I think that if it succeeds teachers will start sharing their knowledge with other teachers. That in return can turn into schools implementing these activities into the lesson plans. I believe this is a simple concept that can be spread across all cultures through discussions in the teachers lounge, to online class forums where teachers share ideas with one another.

What skills, input or guidance would you like to receive from the OpenIDEO community to help you build out or refine your idea further?

I would appreciate any other ideas for activities that can both engage students to think outside the box as well as increase classroom discussion and involvement. The activity should allow for multiple solutions and not just one correct answer.

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Photo of Michael Curry
Team

I feel like this provides a solution to one of the major problems with traditional education. Everyone sits in rows and you learn the right answers. While this could be useful in many situations, it kills creativity. I think the layout of the classroom and the way students are evaluated would be huge factors to consider

Photo of Meena Kadri
Team

Good point about layout and evaluation, Michael. Do you or others here have any suggestions?

Alisha: loving what you've started here. We used to run an exercise when recruiting students to the design school I worked at where they were split into small teams, given a large sheet of paper and an egg then told a time frame in which they would come up with solutions to house the egg so that when it was dropped from a 2nd floor landing into the courtyard, it wouldn't break. Was a great way for us to see how they collaborated & innovated + was super fun for everyone.

We look forward to you developing this cool idea further during our Ideas phase. (Tip: as your thinking around this idea grows, you can update your post at any time by hitting the Update Entry button up there on the right) Perhaps you could discuss the idea with children, parents and maybe even teachers in your community to help evolve your thinking. And maybe even have a trial session with some local kids :^) Exciting to think were it might all lead!

Photo of Alisha Monnette
Team

Thank you both so much for your input, I'm happy you can understand the structure of my idea and where I am trying to go with it. Meena I will definitely begin sharing my idea further in hopes to get feedback from younger children as well as adults on any suggestions they may have. I am excited as well!

Photo of Michael Curry
Team

One suggestion I might add is would there be a way to model projects and assignments after real world career responsibilities. This would obviously be for older students, but I feel like the general societal belief behind creativity is creativity = artist and artist = no money when in reality there are thousands of jobs for the creative mind. Maybe, if you're looking for specifics as to what activities and programs to carry out, model the activities after careers to help educate kids on the opportunities in the working world for the creatives.

Photo of Christopher Rannefors
Team

Alisha, Michael, & Meena,

@Alisha. I think this idea is really well thought out! Do you have any ideas for more creative activities that can be done between teachers and students? I see a fair deal of overlap between this idea and our team's concept for The Play Portal that we are working on refining over the next couple of weeks. I would love for you to take a look at our idea and get some feedback from you since you have already put in a lot of thought in along the same vein.

@Meena. Classic Egg Drop creative learning activity! Do you have any more such activities that you have done in the past that can be translated into games for kids? I would love to hear more.

@Michael. Great comment about career responsibilities. Our team has been thinking a lot about that as well. We came up with one idea for an "expert video" that builds credibility for any one individual activity by displaying how the skills learned can build towards a real career.

Would love for you guys to get involved as we work on refining our concept further. If you are interested, please post and share on our concept page so we can begin a discussion with the rest of the team:

http://www.openideo.com/open/creative-confidence/ideas/the-play-portal/

Photo of Pavitra Rebecca  Kurien
Team

hi i think this is great. A small recommendation would be to market this or spread the word via an online portal so as to engage children. My little niece aged 3 already knows every function on her iPad, i think we should not underestimate the reach of social media to little kids

Photo of Alisha Monnette
Team

Thank you, I have been getting a lot of recommendations for creating an online system for children to integrate what they do in the classroom to an online portal. I think this is great idea, especially with the rise of technology these days.

Photo of Sharon Zhu
Team

The suggestion is great! My friends and I have been influenced by the "one right answer" thinking paradigm for many years, which limited our imagination ability significantly! It is time to create a "think outside the box" environment for the new generation!

Photo of Erin Kromann
Team

This is a great idea. You could also integrate the classroom activities with a social networking website. Children could upload their projects to share with an online community globally. There are thousands of activities that require creativity. Give them paper and tape and see who can build the tallest freestanding tower. Spend a day writing down everything that is annoying and then think of solutions to those problems. Have one student write down 10 things in a drugstore and another write 10 things in their junk drawer. Then pick one item from each list and combine them to create something new.Each activity could have a featured student online to reward their effort.

Photo of Alisha Monnette
Team

I love your suggestions! I think this idea could be great because it can be implemented in many different kinds of activities. An online website would definitely spread the concept quicker as well as get children engaged because nowadays, these children are growing up knowing how to work an iPhone by age 5. So integrating an online community with classroom activities will allow them to take these activities outside the classroom and inside their homes. Thanks for the feedback

Photo of OpenIDEO
Team

Congrats on this idea being today's onsite Featured Idea!

Photo of Alisha Monnette
Team

Thank you!! :)

Photo of Betul Salman
Team

when working in a group as a kid I preferred if the teacher would pick our groups than the students making their own teams. i remember I was one of the last people who get picked in sport teams because I wasn't good at it. when there is a random group everyone can help each other with their weakness and strengths and that's how we learn. I also hated the idea how there are "higher" groups for the "smart people" and "lower groups" for the "less smart" it can be discouraging and it's something that they do in UK schools alot .just something to get you thinking :)

Photo of Alisha Monnette
Team

Yes, I feel the same way when groups are chosen. Especially when some students do not know as many other students in the classroom, it can automatically separate the dynamic for the remainder of the year. That still happens to me today when I am in my college classroom setting. I will definitely take this into consideration when furthering my idea, thank you.