While researching creativity and assessment I have come across the Creative Challenge Index. This initiative was born at the Creativity World Forum, held November 2010 in Oklahoma City, Oklahoma. This is a task force that each state will set up and it’s role is to measure schools by how many opportunities they create for creative and critical thinking. Currently, schools use individual achievement (measured by the standardized test) to determine school-wide success. With the Creative Challenge Index, it will measure the overall environment of a school.
While measurement is not the impetus of growth it is the mark of accountability. Perhaps this will be the beginnings of the change in a schools hierarchy?
During that conference Sir Ken Robinson said: “There are changes facing the world for which there is no precedent. We are currently experiencing a creativity crisis.” When defining creativity, Sir Ken began by saying what it is not:
Creativity is not a whimsy. Creativity is not a set of luxuries. Creativity is not an abstraction. It is actually a fundamental set of skills and competencies. To be creative, you have to be doing something. This is a very practical thing. It is the process of having original ideas that have value.
Robinson’s point is that, if we think of creativity as something we do, we can address creative capacity as a function of human learning, as part of who we are; the capacity for creativity, therefore, can be nurtured, cultivated and developed.
A recent report by IBM (Capitalizing on Complexity: Insights from the 2010 IBM Global CEO Study) asked CEOs around the world the following question: “What are the top qualities you seek when hiring someone?” The answer was “the ability to deal with complexity.” When they were asked what qualities they find lacking in today’s workplace, they said “creativity.”
This also ties is very nicely with embodied learning. The process of thinking about what we are learning while we are doing. We have been lead to believe that over time there is less intelligence involved in the acts of doing or in areas that are largely practical. That somehow sitting for long periods of time just using your head is far more intelligent than lets say a dancer who is interpreting the music, moving each muscle, evoking a response from the audience, emitting emotion without using their words, keeping in time, creating a world that transcends all cultures. In Fact, practical learning / process is higher order thinking at it’s core. When a person has both sides of their brain engaged and the product appears to be effortless this shows skill, fluency, imaging and critical thinking. All of which are considered to be high forms of intelligence or higher order thinking.