Create It and They Will Learn

Today was one of those days where I went to work and the next time I looked up, and it was an hour past "quittin' time". Ever have one of those?  I spent the majority of my day working with my superintendent putting the finishing touches on our grant application for the Iowa Governor's TLC plan. This has been in-the-works since August.  So, needless to say, we did some cheering and celebratory fist pumps when the last edits were made.  I wrapped up my day by helping teachers in a wide variety of content areas locate some tech tools to best help them achieve some tricky Iowa Core Standards.  I LOVE doing that!  It's a puzzle that needs solving, a cog that needs a little grease.  Love it, I tell you. L-O-V-E it.

After the flurry of activity that surrounded making my way home, I walked in the door to find this on the counter. I'm beaming.  Why?  Not because my kid has an affinity for felons.  But because my kid took a pile of mismatched Legos and CREATED!  That bullet-proof vest you see?  It's a life vest off of a shipmate from another set.  Genius!  See that red jumpsuit?  Actually an EMT outfit for an ambulance Lego set.  It is sheer creativity....pure, unadulterated creativity.

The Creating level is the highest level of Bloom's Revised Taxonomy.  Revised because of ever-changing needs and the design of 21st Century education, creating is the single biggest "deep thinker" activity one can do to learn.  Higher order thinking skills are at their peak.  While all other levels of Bloom's are gears that all intertwine, it's creating that is the beat-all, end-all of what we hope to see our students achieve.
Check out Kathy Schrock's numerous resources here.
One of my favorite apps for content creation is Educreations.  You not only have the ability to start out with a blank slate with which to create lessons, but students can easily demonstrate learning through this app with the ability to add images, draw, add sound or other recordings, and share it with others. It's fantastic!  The tools are similar to a Smartboard or Promethean Board and the one touch recording is something I have used with students as young as 5 all the way up through our seniors in high school.  

Sign up and use is free!  There is an app, or you can view content right from your browser.  Your hard work and the work of others (if you so choose) can be made available in their public lesson catalog. You are able to search by content area, subject, grade name it!  I've found, more than anything, that kids do a better job with their projects when they understand that they will have an audience.  Now, not just the red-pen carrying teacher.  THE WORLD!  To a kid that is, as they say, epic!

A wide-variety of lessons created by others for your use.

The possibilities are endless.
So the next time your kid molds you a massive mud pie or makes his mashed potatoes into a reenactment of an eruption of Mt. Vesuvius,  relax.  It's just creativity at work......and it's goooooood!


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