Playful and creative work helps people to explore the entire range of their competencies and skills. A seminar that is outside one’s everyday environment might be a good space for this. Methods that involve all our senses and a broad range of possibilities for expression support this exploration. When participants are thinking creatively, they are able to combine diverse thinking styles and experiences to come up with new or unusual solutions. Methods might encoruage new connections, address convergent and divergent thinking modes and allow a group to experience creativity together
Articles, Checklists, Methods
Working together creatively over a longer period of time, participants develop ideas that serve as the groundwork for their project concepts. The space of the learning facility is included in a mindful and inspirational way.
Explore the diversity of what one can do with a paper clip. Dive into a creative process.
A person describes a problem he or she wants to solve, and his or her colleagues inspire him or her with their associations and advice.
Stimulate creativity and let learners explore surprising connections and metaphors with this association task.
We usually ignore many of the shapes and forms around us. Shifting focus may allow us to perceive them more consciously. This tasks allows learners to do so with the assictance of a photo lens.
This is a tool for collecting associations in a small group or team context. In the first step, participants gather associations, in the second they prioritize them.
A mindmap is a good tool for ideation and documenting associations. It is often used in group processes and set down on paper, but can be used as well in electronic form and serve as a powerful creativity tool.
Participants develop in a playful way a global map of their local topic. The map helps reflecting on their everyday life and how it relates to a globally relevant topic, for example, CO2 pollution.
A concept is a result of an ideation process. More precisely: It describes the preliminary outcome of thinking or a current state, because thinking – hopefully – will not stop. The checklist helps to take the relevant aspects of a concept, thought or argumentation in mind and as well to assess their quality.
The space around learners has an impact on their creativity. The checklist might help to make use of the existing opportunities. How could they best respond to seeking, digging, and wellbeing of creative learners?
People are constantly confronted with decisions. It is often helpful to explore different perspectives in order to make a decision. If we put ourselves in the position of somebody else, we can find new ways of looking at the issue.
This game anticipates an often heard argument when people explaining why they are not engaged in volunteer activities. From this perspective, “involvement doesn’t matter, only elite people and experts” would have the power to change anything. The goal is for participants to realize that money is not the primary aspect of success and not the main resource. As well the game is introducing the idea of impact, asking, how many impact you might have with a limited resource?
A persona may represent a typical person affected by an initiative, or the initiative's target audience or group. Imagine a concrete person, with a name, habits, and clothing. Try to understand them as deeply as possible. Try to think like them, take a "walk in their shoes'". Developing these personas are the first step in helping real people and reflecting critically on our assumptions.
In order to understand better what changes your own ideas can bring about, it can help to picture a bridge. On one side of the bridge is the present or the past, on the other side is the future. The two sides are connected by a bridge, which represents the initiative.
Participants reflect on how they feel, see, and respond to all that surrounds them by activating their sensory knowledge and perception skills through their eyes, ears, skin, muscles, and organs.
At certain moments in life, the metaphor of a river can help people to reflect on their experience. This method stimulates participants to use creativity when looking at their identity in terms of their choices and commitments.
One tactic to instigate creativity is to shift our perspective 180 degrees. Think of what might lead to a disappointing, boring, or fruitless outcome in a learning process. The following task makes use of this kind of reframing with the goal of revealing the interesting aspects of boring issues.
Drama and Play
Theatre reflects the reality and shows us different points of views and interpretations of life. At the same time, theatre is always reflection for the actors as well as for the audience, no matter if played in a official theatre, on the street or in a classroom. The audience recognizes themselves in the magical space that is shown on stage. By changing the perspective, actors can recognize stereotypical behaviours easier and thus find alternative ways of acting in problematic situations. This way theatre can help to clarify situations in a playful manner.
In addition to that the playful and unconscious way of dealing with the foreign language helps to overcome inhibitions to speak or to present oneself during the seminar. Acting and laughing together creates an atmosphere of trust. Finally, fun and a good feeling for the group are important things for every seminar.
In order to be able to use the different ways of expression which the theatre offers, the participants have to make their body able to express itself and therefore they have to know their body very well. Only at this stage different forms of theatre can be used and the participants can leave step by step the audience and become actors themselves. This is the only way how participants cab become subjects instead of objects and develop from witness of a happening to protagonists. This development from spectator to actor happens in different phases. The introduction to theatre is therefore exercise and experiment with the own Body.
With the help of statues different topics and situations can be visualized. This form of presentation gives a lot of space to interpretations, so that different aspects of a topic can be made visible.
The newspaper theatre is another technique of the theatre of the oppressed by Augusto Boal. The basis are newspaper articles, headlines but also books, speeches etc. The scene is created with the help of news and reports.
Forum theatre is a method of the so called theatre of the opressed, developed by Augusto Boal during the Junta regime in Brasil. Today it is updated through the Centro de teatro do oprimido, which was founded through Boal. The classical forum theatre picks up everyday experience with violence or discrimination, develops small scenes, and finally seeks for behavioral alternatives. This happens jointly between actors and audience.
Collecting and structuring opinions, ideas, facts.
SPACE_r. is a kind of performance about walking (spacer in polish) and discovering a different way of seeing and using public spaces. Invented by Performeria Warszawy.
Workshops with stencil art, photography, radio or texts, they offer with very different media a possibility for expression. In our context it is the artistic expression regarding a societal relevant topic. Creativity starts with perception. Creative workshops help people that are used to work often cognitive, to perceive the people and environment different.
N. Zimmermann, E. Leondieva (Ed.)
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