Creativity is declining amongst today’s youth.  Educators can change that.

Creativity is declining amongst today’s youth. Educators can change that.

Registration now open for “Constructing creative learning environments

Since 1990, IQ scores amongst North American youth have continued to rise while creativity has steadily declined.   This is the finding of a broad study carried out by KH Kim*, professor of creativity and innovation at the College of William and Mary in Virginia.  Her research includes individuals from both the US and Canada. 

That conclusion seems counterintuitive, given the frenetic pace of technological development in the modern world.  However, Kim claims that on average, today’s North American youth is less creative and innovative than the generation that preceded it. That’s a scary thought, considering the scope of serious problems facing the world today. 

The good news is that this trend can be reversed.  The most important factor in stimulating the creative process is what she calls “climate” and this is where educators and parents can play a huge role. 

In our June workshop, we’ll explore the elements of “climate” in the classroom and in schools as workplaces.  “Constructing creative learning environments” participants will build a tool kit to help the youth of today tackle the challenges of tomorrow. 

Register now.  Space is limited. 

*Kim, KH. The Creativity Challenge: How We Can Recapture American Innovation. Amherst, NY: Prometheus Books, 2016.

Montreal’s Mile Ex – two days of creative thinking for educators

Mile-Ex is one of Montreal’s trendiest new neighbourhoods.  Once primarily industrial, many of its warehouses and factories have been re-purposed for creative innovators.  That’s why it’s an inspiring venue for Destination Creativity’s June workshop entitled “Constructing creative learning environments.”

Join us June 10-11 to re-ignite the creative potential of your learning environment and discover the energy this dynamic new neighbourhood.  Registration is now open.

And don’t just take our word for it!  Have a look at what Vogue magazine found in Mile-Ex:

Register now for “Constructing creative learning environments”

Register now for “Constructing creative learning environments”

“Constructing creative learning environments,” a pedagogical training workshop to be held June 10-11, 2019 in Montreal, Quebec, is now open for registration.  This is an opportunity for teachers and other educational professionals to :

  • explore the fundamentals that underlie creative thinking and innovation;
  • design ways to make their teaching environments more creative; 
  • improve creative thinking among students;
  • contribute to developing a generation of creative problem-solvers.

Why creativity?

“Creativity” most often evokes images of a painter in front of a canvas, a sculptor before a block of marble, or perhaps a musician composing a tune.  However, creativity is much more than just the Arts.  Every innovation and every solution to a problem is the result of creative thinking.  We have creative thinking to thank for most of our modern conveniences, but sadly also to blame for many of their problematic consequences. While creativity is a fundamentally human trait, studies have also shown that it is in alarming decline amongst today’s youth. This does not bode well for the daunting challenges that our society is facing.  As educators, we need to do a better job of fostering creative thinking.

What can participants expect?

Destination Creativity invites teachers and other educational professionals to this two-day workshop devoted entirely to creativity and innovation. Participants will explore the fundamentals of what creativity is, the conditions needed to make it happen, and the choices that schools can make to engage creative thinking, not just in the classroom, but throughout the institution.

The workshop will be held at Esplanade, a multi-purpose co-working facility in Montreal’s funky Mile-Ex district.  This venue is itself a place of creativity, dedicated to supporting workers in all fields. Participants will be invited to integrate the elements of this space into their own exploration of the elements of creative thinking.

By the end of the workshop, participants will have built a tool kit of creative techniques for immediate implementation in their educational environments.

What are the workshop details?

Dates : June 10-11, 2019 from 9:00 am to 4:00 pm both days

Location : Esplanade in the MileEx district of Montreal

Accommodations: not included.  A list of recommended hotels will be sent to participants upon registration.

Cost: $325 per person, space limited to 16 participants.  Lunch is included on both days.

Who is the workshop leader?

Daniel Stewart, a junior college teacher and programme coordinator, is the founder of Destination Creativity.  He has been an authorized teacher trainer for the International Baccalaureate organization since 2006.  He has led workshops in Canada, the US, Europe, South America and North Africa.   

Understanding the role of creativity and innovation as a vital – but often neglected – component of education has been the focus of Daniel’s research for the past several years.

How do I register?

There are two ways to register:

  1. Click on this link to register via Eventbrite.  Pay with your credit card.
  2. Click on the “download” button below for the registration form. Complete the form and e-mail it to  Make your payment using Interac e-Transfer (Canadian participants only.

Which is better for creativity, teams of like-minded individuals or diversity?

Which is better for creativity, teams of like-minded individuals or diversity?

This is one of the questions we will explore in June at Destination Creativity’s “Constructing creative learning environments” workshop. 

Like-minded people often prefer to work together; it’s easy, usually harmonious, and often productive.  Tasks seem more complicated and time consuming when we have to work with teammates who approach problems differently or who try to take us in different directions.

How can you be creative and innovative without efficiency in teamwork? 

A multitude of studies have shown that despite some of the inherent difficulties of working in an environment of diversity, if properly managed, the creative benefits can be huge.  In a classroom setting, this can be a challenge. 

Finding the right formula for managing diversity and fostering creativity is itself a creative challenge that requires collaborative problem-solving.  That’s one of the goals of “Constructing creative learning environments” to be held in Montreal in June.

Registration begins soon! 

From nature to human innovation

From nature to human innovation

Nature is a rich source of raw materials for the creative human mind and serves as a strong reminder that all forms of creativity are the result of making new associations from existing ideas or objects. 

How about this for an example: George de Mestral, a Swiss engineer, was out for a stroll in the countryside.  As he watched his dog tramping through brush, he wondered about nature’s technology that allows a bur to stick so readily and so determinedly to his dog’s fur and even to his own clothes.  His curious mind, associating a need to attach things with nature’s technology, led him to invent Velcro a few years later. 

More recently, scientists and inventors have studied a range of natural mechanisms to solve problems. Shark skin, for example, has hydrodynamic properties that are now applied to watercraft and competitive swimwear to reduce friction.  This technology, like Velcro, is called “biomimicry” which is rich starting point for problem solving and innovation.

Nature can also inspire aesthetics.  Designers in all domains turn to nature for patterns, colour combinations, textures and shapes.  The example of Bjork arriving at the Oscars in a swan dress may come to mind, but that is only the most exaggerated representation of nature in design.  Without plants and flowers motifs, clothes racks would be pretty bare, but nature is represented more subtly as well.   

During June’s “Constructing creative learning environments” workshop, participants will explore the principle of associations at the core of creativity and creative thinking.  We’ll give nature a go as a source of creative thinking and see how this can be extended to the classroom.