Ken Robinson in his TED talk on ‘School Kills creativity,’ which is the most watched talk on TED, argues that “Creativity is as important as literacy”. Importance of creativity was selected as one of the four 21st Century Skills along with critical thinking, collaboration and communication. Thus incorporating creativity in classroom can be further used as powerful tool to hone skills like problem solving, critical thinking and decision making required to build children, as citizens of 21st century. Unlike the traditional way of teaching when the teacher directs students to learn through memorization of concepts and children become mere recipient of information, creativity encourages students to think out of the box and express themselves. In classroom, project based learning plays a vital role to encourage learning by creating as it provides children an opportunity to think of themes, use different tools and materials, manage time, learn with each other and design a model.
Creativity is a valuable skill that cannot be taught but developed in conducive learning environment
Abhishek, a young boy learning at Raj Kumar’s Community Learning Centre dived his hands into what most children of his age could not even think of. Abhishek is a keen observer and fond of watching videos demonstrating car manufacturing. He has been observing a working JCB (Joseph Cyril Bamford) in his village for one month and this drived him to try his hands on designing a JCB model.
Abhishek spent three days with full dedication to gather tools like syringes, pipes and cardboard and completed his model. He managed to find these in and around his home all by himself. He used cardboard to make structure, pipe to connect and syringes to change the directions and facilitate working of JCB to lift thing.
Abhishek’s family and Raj Kumar, his teacher were happy to see his exceptionally talented work and appreciated his efforts. “ बहुत अच्छा बनाया हैं I अभिषेकं बचपन से ही मेहनती हैं। वह अपनी शिक्षा के प्रति पर्याप्त जिम्मेदार है।” says Abhishek’s mother. For him this is just the beginning, “ये तो शुरवात हैं, अभी बहुत कुछ करना हैं |” says a 13 year old boy who aspires to be an Engineer. He is passionate about his own interest as well as dedicated towards his learning. He spends nearly two hours in self-study. He likes to play badminton and dance.
A JCB Machine by young hands
The process of creating model by one student inspired others to unleash their potential to create
The JCB model designed by Abhishek inspired other students in class to explore their talents and thoughts. His classmates started designing models and looked up to Raj Kumar to give them project.
Aditya, who is also Abhishek’s brother studying in class 4th made a small toy car with the help of battery box of Philips bulb and wheels of broken toy. He also designed a water fall using pipe and thermocol.
Anant, studying in class 1st with the help of Abhishek made computer using thermocol.
Ankit, studying in UKG made Chandrayaan using chart paper and with the support of Raj Kumar.
JCB, Water fall, Cement mixer, Chandrayaan, Computer designed by students at Raj Kumar’s Centre
A great teacher can change everything
Raj Kumar, an edu-leader running his community learning centre at Lagma plays supportive role amongst his students to think out of the box. His strong belief that creativity enhances thinking ability and allows children to explore their imagination inspires him to promote creative activities. He encouraged students to try hands on making Chandrayaan, following ISRO news. Going forward, he plans to give children projects on different themes in every two months and practice project based learning in his classroom. He plans to exhibit these models during Saraswati festival to show hidden talents of his students to their parents and community. His constant motivation led Abhishek to design cement mixer and he is intending to make model of his village for Saraswati festival. Raj Kumar is a young enthusiast and these significant changes are glaring example of his perseverant efforts to strengthen primary education in his community and nurture young minds for better tomorrow.
We, at i-Saksham, carry a dream to improve primary education of underserved children and strongly belief that local youths have power to bring the social change and lead their community. Constant coaching, mentoring, and supportive ecosystem are the keys.
We thank Anubhuti who volunteered with us for all her contribution in this article.