A school of creativity is about gathering our collective wisdom as we prepare children for an ever-changing world, which promotes improved social expression, social harmony and appreciation for diversity. Endorsing the school of creativity methodology in a demanding, highly technical, fast-moving world would not only be fundamental to student success but would make our children more complete as individuals as they live out their passions. The school of creativity learning environment personalizes student learning giving them opportunities to speak with insight and intelligence about what they are learning and how they learn. Focused on inquiry-based learning, education brings the world into the classroom in meaningful ways, and allows students opportunities to engage, explore, understand, and represent their understandings. Children’s passions and interests are embraced to include endless possibilities for creating, inventing, and innovating with outcomes unknown or ideas not yet discovered. Inspired by the Reggio philosophy, our images of children – curious, exploratory, and inquisitive – embraces students’ quest for a better understanding of their world and life. Leonardo Da Vinci’s seven principles guide us as we shift from a process of disseminating information to a process of inquiry and discovery in our effort to identify students’ competencies.
Although our learners will continue to study reading, writing and mathematics, they focus more deeply on a curriculum that allows for more interdisciplinary studies. Combined in this philosophy is the opportunity for children to participate in project-based work that allows children to explore in-depth a topic of interest from many perspectives for an extended period of time. Throughout this work, technology is embedded and interwoven to connect ideas and curricular content. This approach to learning involves the knowledge, skills and aptitudes that enable individuals to think critically, communicate effectively, deal with change and solve problems in a variety of contexts to achieve their personal goals, develop their knowledge and potential, and participate fully in society. The spirit of humanity, a way of living in our daily lives, honors the ‘circle of courage’ where the virtues of belonging, generosity, independence and mastery prepare our students for good citizenship.
In a school of creativity, the child is the centre of all decisions related to learning and education. Activities consider the abilities of our learners and encourage creativity and imagination. They work independently, in small groups and as a class. Each student’s needs are assessed, talents are developed and their personal interests are accepted. A personalized learning environment is organized to reach as many students as possible for as much of the time as possible. Instruction is a team effort; often, a collaboration between classroom teacher and visiting experts. Together they plan an educational process that intertwines academic curricula with children’s personal interests or passions. Curriculum is often designed to find connections between the content of the lesson, the students own life experience and the Alberta Program of Studies learner outcomes. Ideas, concepts, and themes are developed through project-based inquiry where students are given the opportunity to create, innovate or invent.
Capitol Hill School encourages a culture where learners learn creatively and learn to create through the production of original work across the disciplines. As a school of creativity, we are able to empower and engage all young learners to better prepare them for a rapidly changing future dominated by economic and political alterations in our society. This notion allows our children and educators to be creative, inventive and innovative by engaging in entrepreneurial or social innovation, as well as, artistic creativity. For example, possibilities for future development becomes endless as students engage in technological innovations and software ideas undiscovered, or scientific inventions based on modern day ideologies never to exist before.
Teachers live and deliver curriculum, in very creative ways, as they engage this process for learning. Ongoing experiences, of creative engagement, are nurtured through diverse kinds of learning. Together, students and educators experience personal growth by creating original work across the disciplines. In this journey, learners venture towards outcomes unknown….ideas not yet discovered. Learning, is purposeful, meaningful, and personalized, and elicits the uniqueness of each individual. The notions of school of creativity, aligned with the Alberta Program of Studies learner outcomes and the Calgary Board of Education Three Year Plan, add to our children’s growth, as human beings, by instilling the joy, the love, the sense of wonder and discovery that must go hand in hand in learning. Similar, to life, this is a journey that encapsulates endless possibilities.
We believe that all students should experience learning in meaningful ways. The opportunity to create, invent and innovate, and perform as an artist, musician, scientist, mathematician, or technologist are an essential part of a well-rounded curriculum and complete education. Innovation and education go hand-in-hand in our quest to build innovative thinkers. To remain competitive in the global economy, we need to reinvigorate the kind of creativity and innovation that has made countries great. To do so, we must nourish our children’s creative skills. In addition to giving our children the science and math skills they need to compete in the new global context, we should also encourage the ability to think creatively that comes from a meaningful education.
“…….innovation depends on a “deep vein of creativity’ and people who can……write books, build furniture, make movies, imagine new kinds of software that will capture people’s imaginations…..”
Tough Choices or Tough Times, National Center
On the Education and the Economy, US