and Critical Thinking in
Why should we cultivate creativity in our
• “Both highly creative and highly intelligent students are often unconventional
nonconformists who are viewed by teachers as more difficult to teach and
have more challenging behavior to manage.” (Fletcher, 2011)
• In order to make sure that our classes of diverse learners are served well, we
must make sure that we are tapping into the learning styles of all of our
• When students are engaged, their behavior is managed.
• To encourage “flow”. (Fletcher, 2011)
What is “Flow”?
• “It is in meeting the challenges that cause neither boredom nor
unmanageable anxiety that one finds moments of intense absorption, a sense
of timelessness, and the deep satisfaction Csikszentmihalyi (1996) called
“flow.” To achieve flow, individuals must fully understand the rules of the
domain they explore and be able to freely use the tools and constructs
available to them.” (Fletcher, 2011)
Strategies for Developing Creativity
(And Encouraging “Flow”)
1. Give students the tools they need to produce a large volume of work. (Fletcher, 2011)
2. Foster an environment that encourages risk taking. Make sure that the students are able to
retain integrity even when they fail. (Fletcher, 2011)
3. Teach the students the skills they will need to do group work in a effective way. Be
available when they need assistance. (Fletcher, 2011)
4. “Encourage diversity.” Make sure that all students feel validated and that their opinion
matters. (Fletcher, 2011)
5. Encourage internal motivation by making instructions clear and staying out of group
work. Allow the students to wrestle with the material and be available primarily for
clarification purposes. (Fletcher, 2011)
Why should we cultivate Critical Thinking?
• Critical Thinking is higher level thinking.
• In order to make sense of the world around them, students must be taught
how to think critically.
• Only through analyzing and applying new hypotheses can students truly
master new concepts.
Strategies for Developing Critical Thinking
1. Make sure that you have given your students the correct foundation. Activate schema with low level
information and a basic assessment to assure their knowledge. (Encouraging High School Students to
2. Encourage group work – Group work facilitates processing of material. Through discussion, the
students are able to move up the levels of Bloom’s Taxonomy. (Encouraging High School Students
to Think video)
3. Ask open –ended questions that require justification based on the topic at hand. (Encouraging High
School Students to Think video)
4. Have students keep an academic journal to record preconceptions in regards to new concepts and to
record reflections after learning a new concept. (How to Study and Learn)
5. Encourage students to write down questions to new concepts to be answered together in group and
class discussion. (How to Study and Learn)
• (). Encouraging High School Students to Think : Pearson.
• Kellough, R., & Kellough, N. (2011). Secondary School Teaching: a Guide to Methods
and Resources . : Allyn and Bacon.
• How to Study and Learn (Part One). (n.d.). How to Study and Learn (Part One).
Retrieved July 7, 2014, from http://www.criticalthinking.org/pages/critical-