Wednesday, December 30, 2009

Exploring the Relationship Between Creativity and Critical Thinking

One of the problems that I face in my job as a curriculum co-ordinator is making sense of large amounts of new information and research, particularly if the new information pushes against some of my previously held beliefs and understandings. I am also challenged to turn a sea of information into a clear picture or message I can share with others.  If I exposed my process for sorting through information, you would see that I take a lot of tangents, engage people in conversations that help me verbalize my thoughts, and make connections to texts that provide examples, or non examples, to help me clarify my thinking.

Over the next few posts, I am going to expose my thinking as I try to sort through something that Sir Ken Robinson said about creativity and critical thinking in his a September interview for ASCD’s Educational Leadership.  He stated that “people see creativity and critical thinking as being opposed.”  I am guilty of this.  When I think of critical thinking, I think of analyzing and deconstructing, questioning and challenging.  When I think of creativity I see inspiration and the formulation or making of something. I agree with Robinson when he says, “you can’t be creative if you don’t do something” and I also agree when he goes on to explain how creativity applies to any subject or activity.  In this particular interview, however, he alludes to the idea that creativity and critical thinking are not opposites, but he doesn’t help me reconcile my definitions of creativity and critical thinking.  Add to this all of the reading I have been doing about 21st century skills (including creativity and critical thinking) and my thinking is muddy. 
If you want to wade through the mud with me, click here to listen to an excerpt of Why Creativity Now? A Conversation with Sir Ken Robinson or click here for the full interview.  

Photo by: / CC BY-NC 2.0

1 comment:

  1. Your thinking doesn't seem muddy to me at all. I define creative thinking and critical thinking as related endeavors in a recent post at Press on! Look forward to your next posts on the subject.


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