Innovation and Creative Thinking
The 12-step guide to teaching and learning creativity

 The 12 steps are:

  1. Define your problem.*
  2. Define and visualize the ideal solution.
  3. Gather the facts: specific and general.
  4. Break the pattern.
  5. Go outside your own field.
  6. Try new combinations.
  7. Use all your senses.
  8. Switch off let it simmer.
  9. Use music or nature to relax.
10. Sleep on it.
11. Eureka! It pops out.
12. Recheck it.

* Note: You can reverse steps 1 and 2.
This 12-step checklist is from the "poster page" that introduces the chapter on creative thinking in 1999's best-selling book, The Learning Revolution, by Gordon Dryden and Dr. Jeannette Vos.

"Amazingly," they say at the start of the chapter, "the most important subject of all is not taught at most schools: how to invent your own future, how to create new ideas. Yet the world today needs a diet of revolutionary new ideas as it never has before."

All the great ideas in history, all the great inventions, obviously have one thing in common. All have come from the human brain. Just as the brain has fantastic ability to store information, it has an equal ability to reassemble that information in new ways: to create new ideas. And very simply, an idea is a new combination of old elements. Write that down, underline it, reinforce it. It could be the most important sentence you ever write. It contains the key to creating new solutions. There are no new elements. There are only new combinations.

While most readers will find the total chapter enthralling, teachers and those interested in schooling can perhaps learn most from the co-authors suggestions to apply the 12-step checklist to rethinking the future of education and schooling.


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