Monday, November 29, 2010

cars and drawing

drawing and cars

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Tuesday, November 16, 2010

Gustav Mahlers thoughts on Music Expression

Chapter 4: Being Creative

This chapter dealt mainly with the many different misconceptions about creativity. The author suggests that in order to promote creativity, it is essential to understand the main elements/phases of the creative process, which include the following:
1. The importance of the medium.
2. The need to be in control of the medium.
3. The need to play and take risks; and
4. The need for critical judgement.

He also suggests that creative abilities lie within all of us. There aren't certain 'special people' who are known as being more creative than others. This suggests that these people are set apart from the rest of the world by having extraordinary gifts. To some degree, some people do seem to have more natural creativity than others but it doesn't mean that creative people are a special breed of people.

A large misconception is that creativity is reserved only for those who take part in certain types of activities, mainly the arts. This is not true either. The daily work of visual artists, for example, involves much more than "surfing on a constant tide of inspiration". The creative work they do involves a huge amount of practical routine and control of materials and techniques. Anyone can be creative in the work they do. "It is not a specific type of activity but a quality of intelligence."

Free expression is another misconception in the world of creativity. The image the author shares is of children running wild and knocking down furniture; being spontaneous and unihibited than focused and serious. Brainstorming is a very good creative tool, if used properly.

Creativity involves doing something. People cannot be creative in the abstract, but they can be creative in doing something-- math, engineering, writing, music, business, etc. However, creativity is also different than imagination. Creativity begins with imaginative thought, with envisioning new possibilities but continues to go further. "You might be lying motionless on your bed but in a fever of imagination. Private imaginings may have no impact in the public world at all [but] creativity does." Creativity isn't just a mental process. It involves action. A first definition of creativity could be "imaginative processes with outcomes in the public world."

Other factors in the creativity processes include originality, values, perception, imagination, and even language. Different modes of understanding (verbal language versus pictures), symbols (formal symbols mean something) and schematic forms are are used in functional ways to get the world's business done. I found it interesting that if we tried to speak the language we use today in Shakespeare's time, he would only be able to understand on average, five out of nine words in our vocabulary. And- we both speak English!

Tuesday, November 9, 2010

"Knowing Your Mind"-Chapter Three

One of our family friends has been a successful dentist, veterinarian and a lawyer along with being stellar in politics and a superb classical pianist.  Another friend has been outstanding in radio broadcasting.  He also has expertise as a pilot, an engineer, an organist and as a trick rider all in his short 40 years.

I believe our two friends are very intelligent.  I also wonder if more of our circle of friends( myself included)
tried to accomplish as much as these gentlemen, how much more could we command?  "To be or not to be?"
"Intelligence or tapping into intelligence?"

The introduction to chapter three outlines three characteristics of human intelligence that are important in the understanding of creativity.  They are:
*intelligence is multifaceted
*intelligence is interactive and dynamic
*each of us has a different profile of intellectual and creative abilities

Chapter three relates the story of Liz Yarlow, an acclaimed viola player, who was almost totally deaf.  Her situation illustrates the great capacity of the mind to accomplish what seems impossible.  The brain and its workings have long been a mystery.   More discoveries are being made by studying the functions of different regions of the brain plus studies on the electrical processes.

Research has shown that the left hemisphere seems to control logic and scientific reasoning while the right hemisphere is related to beauty, intuition, and spirituality.  all areas of the brain are interconnected and needed for successful results.  It is very important for the brain to have a chance to develop abilities.

Understanding creativity can happen through looking at:
*the variety of human intelligence(multiple intelligence)
*the dynamics of human intelligence(holistic)
*the individual nature of intelligence(idiot savants)

In conclusion, the human mind is our greatest resource for the future and the present.  "All individuals
have a wide range of abilities across different types of intelligence." We, as teachers, must find any way that it takes to help our students "thrive not just survive". 

P.S. If you have time, go to www. and view "Changing Education Through The Arts Program!