What is Creativity?


Are you creative?  Are there any creative people in your life?  Do you think they share some common traits?

Some traits of creative people can be considered weird behavior.  As a teacher, do you think that you can tell who are creative kids in your class?  Do you think that you are prepared to help those creative kids?  Let’s watch this video of a creative girl.


Before we talk about creativity in today’s education, let’s learn from the researchers.  Dr. Bonnie Cramond at UGA is one of the leading professors and researchers in this field.  If you are interested in this field, you can check the Torrance Center at UGA.  Torrance Center help people to know whether they are creative or not and provide resources to teachers and parents to help creative children they have.

Sir Ken Robinson, a creativity expert from British, actually delivered a powerful talk in 2006 and indicated that schools kill creativity.  Let’s take a look at part of this video to see why he thinks that the school is killing creativity.

Four years later, he was invited to give another TED talk about creativity.  He has some great ideas that is very helpful for educators.  Now let’s listen to his talk.

Do you agree with him?  What impresses you the most?


Do you have any example about how your teachers encourage you to be creative?  What kind of things can you do to help students think creatively?  How can you boost students’ creativity?  There is a school in Hall County, GA is doing something special in their school.  The school is called DaVinci Academy.  This is really a dream school for both students and teachers.  No principal.  Only 10 teachers and 240 students.  They were having the museum exhibition about Africa and Egypt last spring semester.  Students do the research, set up the exhibition and explain everything to visitors all by themselves.  The students don’t have textbooks and the teachers create their own curriculum…this made parents a little bit concerned and worried in their first year.  However, the test scores from their students proved that they can still achieve the goals and all the standards.  They try hard to tell people that creativity, critical thinking, and high motivation…etc, can still be emphasized in the current education system.


You are required to create a stop animation project.  What is stop animation? Stop animation, simply put, is just an animation technique.  You move the objects and take pictures of each move and then you edit all the pictures by using some software.  Let’s take a look at a few examples.  (I know they are made by professionals.  We are not expected to be that good, but again, no sloppy work please.)

Amazon Kindle Commercial

XBox Commercial


K-12 Education

Water Cycle

Solar System

College Education

Collaborative learning

To create the stop animation, you need to at least do the following things.

Step 1. Find good partners– creative, responsible, similar schedule, easy to meet with…(this project will take a lot of time and effort…so I will suggest that you work with at least one partner).

Step 2. Choose a topic. The best topics are ones that shows cycles, systems, formulas, strategies, processes, etc. If you are choosing a K-12 subject, make sure you consider GRADE LEVEL, SUBJECT, and GEORGIA PERFORMANCE STANDARD when your group decides the topic.

  • Some example topics for K-12 education include
    • The digestive system
    • The Pythagorean Theorem
    • Photosynthesis
    • Metamorphosis of a butterfly
  • Example topics for College education include
    • Tools and Apps to use technology mates: Nanny for Google chrome, Wunderlist, Focus booster, Google Docs.
    • 21st century learning skills: Tips on Collaborative/cooperative learning, Students’ Dos and Donts in a college classroom

Step 3. Brainstorm and create a storyboard for your video.

Step 4. Decide what props and equipment your group will need. Work on building props.

Step 5. Take pictures of your props. You can check out a camera and a tripod in OIT, Aderhold 232. In case you want to use your phone, you need a tripod and connecting cords so that you can download your pictures to a computer.

Step 6. Import the pictures to iMovie.

Step 7. Edit and animate your pictures. Add narration and music if necessary.

Step 8. Once you’ve finished your videos – “share” them to our class Youtube account. The login information will be announced in class.

Step 9. Share the Youtube link with your group.

Step 10.  Each group member should create a “Stop Animation” page in their BLOGS.

Step 11. On the page, embed your slowmation video and write a short description about the video and the project in general. In your description, please respond to the following:

  1. Which grade/age level is your video targeted at?
  2. What is the subject?
  3. What is the topic of the video?
  4. [K-12] What Georgia Performance Standard does your video address?
  5. How might this video help audiences/students to understand the concept?
  6. What do you think are the merits of student-generated educational videos?
  7. What advice would you give to students and teachers when creating videos?


  • How many people can be in a group?
    I changed my mind after talking to some of my peers.  Since this project requires your creativity, effort and time, get into a group no more than 3.
  • How long should this stop animation be?
    Usually, it’s about one or two minutes.  A few students made longer ones before.  I don’t expect long animation.
  • Can we use smartphone to take pictures?
    Yes, you can.  But the quality will be really really bad.  Strongly recommend that you use a digital camera, just the basic one will do a better job than smartphone.
  • How many pictures do we need?
    You may need only 100 pictures, or maybe 200.  One group set up the record for about 1400 pictures last semester.  TAKE MORE THAN YOU NEED!  The more images you have, the more smooth the film will be!
  • Do I really need a tripod?
    Most groups regret that they didn’t use the tripod after they completed the project.  They got a lot of blurred images.  Some of them even needed to retake the footage.
  • Do I really need background music?
    No, you don’t.  It’s totally up to you.  But you do need to talk! You need to talk about the information  and help others to know the topics!



10/8 (Tue): Set-up Stop animation

10/10 (Thur): Guest Speaker

10/15 (Tue): Production

10/17 (Thur): Production

10/22 (Tue): Presentation


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