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Running head: Brain-Targeted Teaching Model and Creativity

Brain-Targeted Teaching Model and Creativity A Pathway to Good Ideas Loretta Cooper Azusa Pacific University

Brain-Targeted Teaching Model and Creativity

Brain-Targeted Teaching Model and Creativity A Pathway to Good Ideas Good ideas and creativity walk hand in hand. Can we teach kids to be creative? According to Hardiman (2010), Most descriptions of creativity include the ability to produce novel ideas or products after acquiring a certain proficiency of content knowledge (p.230). Hardiman believes that integrating the arts into teaching methodologies is a powerful way to foster creative, divergent thinking. Mariale Hardiman of John Hopkins University has come up with a teaching model informed by cognitive theory and research from the neurological and cognitive sciences. When it comes to teaching creativity, Dr. Mariale Hardiman recommends starting at the top with the brain. According to Hardiman (2010), It seems rather obvious -- after all, learning does occur in the brain, but all teaching does not result in learning, so while all learning is brainbased, all teaching is not (p. 233).

This learning process also includes integrating the arts, the arts being used as a portal to creativity. A study conducted by Winner and Hetland (2007) revealed;

For students living in a rapidly changing world, the arts teach vital modes of seeing, imagining, inventing, and thinking. If our primary demand of students is that they recall established facts, the children we educate today will find themselves ill-equipped to deal with problems like global warming, terrorism, and pandemics. Those who have learned the lessons of the arts, however - how to see new patterns, how to learn from mistakes, and how to envision solutions - are the ones likely to come up with the novel answers needed most for the future (para.6).

Brain-Targeted Teaching Model and Creativity

The Brain-Targeted Teaching Model (2010) outlines six stages of the teaching and learning process. Brain Target One: Setting the Emotional Climate for Learning: Supportive climate in the classroom; routines, rituals, positive communication. Establishing a safe classroom environment. Brain Target Two: Creating the Physical Learning Environment: A physical learning environment to enhance creativity and artful learning. How a space makes us feel matters. Brain Target Three: Designing the Learning Experience: Big Picture Map of the Unit leads to deeper understanding and retention. Cognitive processes of holistic and visual thinking. Brain Target Four: Teaching for Mastery of Skills, Content, and Concepts: Use of art based activities to promote mastery of content (stimulates long term learning). Brain Target Five: Teaching for Extension and Application of Knowledge: Apply knowledge to a task that requires students to solve problems. Place activities in the context of the real world. Brain Target Six: Evaluating Learning: Give students relevant feedback about performance. Move from teach, test, and move on method to teach, revisit, and test (Hardiman, 2010, pgs. 237-243).

Brain-Targeted Teaching Model and Creativity

This is quite an interesting framework. I can see how using this framework could lead to deeper thinking. The integration of arts allows for student creativity that could certainly lead to good ideas. I would love to try the Brain Targeted Teaching model. The connection of

neurology and education is very intriguing. I have an inherent bias; I was a theatre arts major. My undergraduate major has given me an innate ability to infuse the arts into the curriculum; a perfect pathway for good ideas.

Brain-Targeted Teaching Model and Creativity

References Hardiman, M. M. (2010). The creative-artistic brain (D. A. Sousa, Ed.). In Mind, brain, & education: Neuroscience implications for the classroom (pp. 227-247). Bloomington, IN: Solution Tree Press. Hetland, L., & Winner, E. (2007, September 02). Art for our sake school arts classes matter more than ever - but not for the reasons you think [Editorial]. Retrieved from http://www.boston.com/news/globe/ideas/articles/2007/09/02/art_for_our_sake/?page=fu ll