Tuesday, July 30, 2013

But you'll know better.

I just read Zig Zag: The Surprising Path to Greater Creativity by Keith Sawyer.

This book is a wonderful resource of creativity exercises, information, and inspiration. I think it's perfect for teachers... for themselves and their students.

Keith Sawyer has identified eight steps that anyone can follow to become more creative: 

  1. Ask
  2. Learn
  3. Look
  4. Play
  5. Think
  6. Fuse
  7. Choose
  8. Make

Here's an example of a remote association exercise...
Pick up a book right now and turn to page 56. Find the fifth sentence. Pick up a second book, ideally on a very different topic, and, again, turn to page 56. Find the fifth sentence. Now, tell a story that reveals a connection between these two sentences.

There are over 100 cool exercises in this book to inspire your creativity and get you thinking in new ways. 

Sawyer explains how great ideas arrive, not in a flash, but more by drips and drops over time.

One of my favorite quotes from the book (obviously):
Exceptional creators, in all walks of life, are surrounded by books.

And, of course...
...at the end of the day, the only ideas that change the world are the ideas that make it out into the world. You owe it to your ideas, you owe it to yourself, you owe it to the world, to translate your creativity into reality.

And, finally...
If you learn only one thing from this book, I hope it's this:  Creativity is not a moment in time; it's a way of life. Live the creative life. Don't worry about having ideas; when you follow the eight steps, the ideas will come to you. And the more ideas you have, the more likely you are to come upon one that's brilliant. So brilliant, it will look, to everybody else, like it came in a flash. With a leap of insight. By magic. But you'll know better. 

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