Creativity Lesson: Whack on the Other Side

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*This lesson coincides with a chapter titled, a whack on the other side of the head, from A Whack on the Side of the Head by Roger von Oech.

Lesson written by:  Greg Spriggs and John Test

Grade level range: 3-12

Length of time to teach lesson: 20 minutes plus depending on the age of the students

Overview of lesson:  Students use story dice to create random pieces of a story and use the four roles of creativity to be imaginative in story telling.

Objectives (learning targets) of this lesson:   Students will learn about and apply the four roles of creativity to develop a product.

Supplies:  Story Cubes (4 per person),  Story Time Cubes (for additional scaffold), the Four Roles of Creativity Handout and Mini-Story Page, lined piece of paper, pencil

Step-by-step teaching instructions:

1) Introduce the Four Roles of Creativity (on handout)

2) Introduce Story Dice

    a. Vocabulary- The teacher matches each symbol on the die to represent a vocabulary term.  Have students use the terms correctly in any medium of the teacher’s choice: newspaper article, magazine, museum exhibit, poster, etc.  

    b. Visual Memorization- Students work in pairs.  The first student decides what symbol represents a vocabulary word and definition.  Then the second student guesses which vocabulary term matches the picture. 

3) Hand-out the mini-story page.  Roll four of the story dice and complete the directions on the handout.  This leads students through all 4 creative roles while creating a mini-story.

Special Notes from the creator of this lesson: Lesson can be implemented class-wide by projecting the dice upon the overhead and everyone follows the directions step by step.   

Assessment: The Creativity Rubric is based upon a whole multiple intelligences presentation project that also includes the writing process (Rough Draft, Peer Editing, and Presentations in the form of the final draft).  Students are required to do the writing process to enhance their writing. However, the teacher has the option to implement the multiple intelligences format with their students if they wish.  The creative writing activity (story cubes) is the rough draft.  The writing task is "How to survive in a _________?"  Creative Fluency: Idea Generation- After writing the rough draft the writer brainstorm effective items that will help them survive effectively in the setting that was selected in their rough draft.  Elaboration:  Adding Detail-After completing rough draft and creative fluency, students add details to the items used in survival.  The better implementation of descriptive writing equals a better score on the rubric.  Originality: After Peer Editing, student takes the feedback from students and applies it to their final draft.  Flexibility:  To show flexibility, students can present their final piece of writing in the mediums of multiple intelligences.  The more multiple intelligences addressed, the more flexible and creative that student is. 

Possible Multiple Intelligence Suggestions for Students:

Linguistic- Create an acrostic or tongue twister that reminds you of great survival tactics.

Logical-Mathematical- Write a rational explanation as to why this survival story will work effectively?

Spatial- Draw a sketch of your survival story.

Bodily-Kinesthetic- Create an exhibit that shows how the survival story would play out.

Musical- Write a poem or song about your survival story.

Interpersonal- Create a how to survive in a ________ and teach that to others.

Intrapersonal- Create a reflection document about your survival story.  Is this realistic?

Naturalistic- Present the survival situation in a natural form.


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