The Creative Schools program, which has been running since 2018 supported by the Department of Education WA, presents Creativity as a model which can be broken down and taught consciously. Students are supported to understand and develop the ‘Five Habits of Learning’, habits they all need to be successful. These habits – imagination, inquisitiveness, discipline, persistence and collaboration – link directly to the General Capabilities in the WA curriculum.
Over the course of Term 2 and 3, Year 6 teachers Miss Gibson and Mr Kujawksi will be collaborating with two Creative Practitioners, Trudi Bennett and Naomi West, who will combine their skills to work with their two classes.
The program will itself be a surprising process. Students will need to be bold, freely offering ideas to address problems they encounter and assuming responsibility for their learning. Through participating in creative learning projects, students will be provided with opportunities to develop and extend their critical thinking skills, as they work collaboratively to solve problems
and reflect critically on solutions.
The Creative Habits of Learning are personal attributes that we all hope to possess as adults and use competently in a subconscious way. We were not born with them, we stumbled through our childhood not knowing we needed to learn these new skills. Many of us would have learned collaboration, inquisitiveness, persistence, imagination and discipline through a mix of experience with trial and error, through observing others and through mentoring advice from parents and teachers.
Students in the program practise implementing new ideas and strategies to work on their creativity in a conscious way until they become subconsciously competent at these new skills. They can then apply them in every area of their learning and their lives.
We are looking forward to sharing the Creative Schools experience with the rest of the school community as it progresses. Keep checking here for news and updates!
View the video below to find out more about Creative Schools or visit the Creative Schools website.
Creative Schools Program Week by Week Recount
In our first week of Creative Schools we met our creatives, Trudy and Naomi. First we went to the school oval in our respective classes, LA8 and LA9 to play some warm up games and get our brains started.
The first game we played was the Stop and Go game. This activity helped us with our listening skills as the main objective was to move around and when the creatives said ‘go’ we walked and when they said ‘stop’ we stopped. The creatives then made the game more complicated by adding other instructions before cheekily reversing the instructions meaning! This managed to trick us, just a tiny bit, and we had to use persistence to not give up! We also played another game where we had to ask an object a question. This game focused on our inquisitiveness.
After the games, we went to our classroom and discussed the five habits of creative learning which are collaborative, inquisitive, imaginative, disciplined and persistent. Our challenge was to use our imagination to construct a creature to represent one of the five creative habits, using only newspaper, tape and string! See some of our designs below.
In week 2 of Creative Schools, we warmed up our brains by brainstorming as many possible uses for leaves. We then played with possibilities by creating leaf art. We had just started this activity, when Ms Goodsell and Ms Bates interrupted our session. They announced that our oval was going to be reclaimed by the Government and used for housing. We were shown a slideshow explaining why the Campbell Primary School oval was selected and letting us know that we had until June to put in a submission to the Government if we were unhappy with their decision. Everyone was really sad, angry and confused so the creatives, Trudi and Naomi, told us to brainstorm ways to save the school oval. We came up with lots of great solutions!
Two hours later Ms Bates told us that it was a role play and we were all very relieved.
In our third and fourth sessions of Creative Schools, we continued to work on playing with possibilities to find housing solutions in Canning Vale without us having to lose our school oval! We were split into groups depending on the solution we came up with. The groups were: urban design (which had to find other areas of land for housing), new building designs (like underground or over water housing), and new ways of living (changing our housing layouts). We created posters of our ideas to include as attachments to support our submission. In these sessions we were using the creative habits of being inquisitive and imaginative as we explored and investigated different ideas.
In session five, we played a warm up game called ‘man on the moon’ which focused on attentive listening and being respectful to others.
Trudi shared with us the State Government law about reclaiming land, showing us that the Government can reclaim Crown or freehold land if they need to. To stop the Government from claiming our oval, we would have to introduce a bill into parliament, amending the current law so that school land cannot be claimed.
We wrote a persuasive paragraph about our solutions and shared them in a parliamentary role play. We focused on the habit ‘Collaborative – sharing the product and giving and receiving feedback.’
Creative Schools has helped us in many ways; we even learned a new warm up game that was about listening. Here are the five habits of learning that creative schools want us to focus on: collaborative, for example sharing products, inquisitive, for example wondering and questioning, persistent, for example daring to be different, imaginative, for example playing with possibilities, and disciplined, for example crafting and improving.
Back in week 2, Creative Schools talked to us about why the government was going to take our oval away. Creative schools wanted us to plan other ways to solve the housing problem instead of our oval being taken. In a group, we made four solutions, some were not realistic, but it was just a plan. Then we picked one main solution out of those four. Some people did underground housing, shipping container housing and under the sea housing. We then wrote reasons why our idea was a good one. After that, the groups made a little model on how their idea would look.
It all got serious in week 6, as we were writing a submission to send to the government with reasons for them not taking our oval. We wrote a paragraph with our solution and made it look professional. In week 7 of creative schools, we finished our submission and Mr K and Miss G copied all the paragraphs into one document and saved it into Connect ready for us to share.
From the Year 6 Campbell Primary School Students.
Week 11 Update
Students from LA8 and LA9 presented their Creative Schools Projects yesterday – 28 June 2021. We invite parents to read the submission prepared by the students and we congratulate them on their hard work and commitment to the project. Thanks also to Miss Gibson and Mr Kujawski and our Creative School practitioners Naomi and Trudi.
Please click on this link to read the student submission – Year 6 Student Submission
In our last session of Creative Schools in Term 2, we shared our housing submission by having three people from LA10 join each group to listen to our ideas. We took turns in reading out our ideas and everyone got an equal turn. This was a great way to show what parts of the work we wrote in the submission. Ms Bates and Ms Goodsell came in to congratulate us on the eight page submission we wrote. We look forward to continuing Creative Schools in Term 3.