“Consider what you see as being the key connections between creative pedagogies and knowledge networking.”
With the introduction of digital technolog within education the creation of new knowledge is evolving rapidly and it is now becoming a question of how we can use the technology available to create new knowledge rather than the availability of technology (Payton, 2019, p. 2)
Education leaders are demanding students are taught “21st Century skills” as a driver for educational excellence to ensure a positive outcome for future prosperity to both the individual and the economy. The most common theories on the core skills required for the 21st century is noted as critical thinking, creativity, metacognition, problem-solving, collaboration, motivation, self-efficacy, adaptability and the ability for life-long learning. The range of skills identified are broad with many educators asking the question how do we teach 21st century skills and in fact can they be taught? (Mitsiou et al., 2018, p. 19). 21st Century skills are regarded as the 4 C’s of Creativity, Critical Thinking, Communication and Collaboration as outlined in the following YouTube video:
As an example, creativity is regarded highly as a necessary skill in the 21st Century framework, however, the act of teaching creativity is a heavily debated topic with many scholars holding the view creativity is a skill an individual is born with and can’t be taught only enhanced to inspire and awaken creativity. As a result, creativity is recommended to be embedded into subjects within the curriculum, for example maths and science rather than a stand alone subject due the difficult nature of quantifying creativity and the acquisition of this skill (Chatzidaki et al., p. 94).
The promotion of memory and analytical skills is still a preferred method of teaching within the education system today and in order to promote 21st Century skills programs need to be developed to influence creative thinking through the implementation of developing programs within education to assist in teaching the skills required for the future to develop new knowledge networks. Through increasing student engagement and new ways of thinking a different approach to traditional practices is recommended through play-based activities to promote higher order thinking.
Gamification within education is highly regarded as an effective instruction to enhance student engagement, motivation, improve recall, retention and provides instant feedback and the ability for students to check progress in real time (Kim et al., 2018, p. 8). Gamification allows the learner to work towards a goal, select actions, experience consequences and mistakes are relatively risk-free through experimentation and most games employ interaction, feedback, problem solving and fun all aspects that promote 21st century skills (Goethe, 2019). The ability to take a risk and fail are important skills required for life long learning and promote creativity due to the willing to take a risk on a new idea or innovation.
According to Sir Robert Edwards, the world is spinning fast and organisations need people to think creatively, work in teams, communicate effectively, adaptability and flexibility and creativity is the key to this and we must “Rethink Creativity” (Robinson, 2006).
To be creative we must first define exactly what is creativity. Edwards believes there are three aspects to this, starting with Imagination, the process of awakening our minds to an idea, followed by creativity is the process of developing an original idea and innovation, where the idea is put into practice (Robinson, 2006).
“The challenge now is to transform education systems into something better suited to the real needs of the twenty-first century. At the heart of this transformation there has to be a radically different view of human intelligence and of creativity.”
The pressure to teach 21st century skills through connecting creative pedagogies and knowledge networks lies in the adaptability of the educational system to implement new and innovative teaching practices to achieve new learning outcomes. In summary I will let the words of John Dewey lead the way forward
“If we teach today as we taught yesterday, we rob our children of tomorrow”
For further reading, grab a copy of “Out of our minds the power of being creative” by Kevin Roberts an insightful and interesting read.
Chatzidaki, N., & Kechagias, C. (2019). Can We Teach Creativity? Extending Socrates’s Criteria to Modern Education. The Journal of Aesthetic Education 53(4), 86-98. https://www.muse.jhu.edu/article/738240.
Goethe O. (2019). Games Are Learning Systems. In: Gamification Mindset. Human–Computer Interaction Series. Springer, Cham, Switzerland.
Kim, S. Song, K. Lockee, B. Burton, J. (2018.) Gamification in Learning and Education, Enjoy Learning Like gaming. Springer, Cham, Switzerland.
Mishra, P. Henriksen, D. (2018). Creativity, Technology & Education: Exploring their Convergence. Springer, Cham, Switzerland.
Payton, M. S. (2019). Secondary teachers’ descriptions of blended learning and professional development: A case study (Order No. 27829856). Available from ProQuest Dissertations & Theses Global. (2386218736). Retrieved from https://ezproxy.csu.edu.au/login?url=https://search-proquest-com.ezproxy.csu.edu.au/docview/2386218736?accountid=10344
Robinson, K. (2006). Do schools kill creativity
Sewalt, S. (2017). 21st Century Skills: The 4C’s.