Participatory Creativity : Introducing Access and Equity to the Creative Classroom book cover
1st Edition

Participatory Creativity
Introducing Access and Equity to the Creative Classroom

ISBN 9781138945265
Published June 30, 2016 by Routledge
218 Pages 33 B/W Illustrations

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Book Description

Participatory Creativity: Introducing Access and Equity to the Creative Classroom presents a systems-based approach to examining creativity in education that aims to make participating in invention and innovation accessible to all students. Moving beyond the gifted-versus-ungifted debate present in many of today’s classrooms, the book’s inclusive framework situates creativity as a participatory and socially distributed process. The core principle of the book is that individuals are not creative, ideas are creative, and that there are multiple ways for a variety of individuals to participate in the development of creative ideas. This dynamic reframing of invention and innovation provides strategies for teachers, curriculum designers, policymakers, researchers, and others who seek to develop a more equitable approach towards establishing creative learning experiences in various educational settings.

Table of Contents

List of Figures and Tables




Chapter One: Establishing a Systems-based Understanding of Creativity

Chapter Two: Reframing Creativity as a Participatory and a Distributed Process

Chapter Three: A Culture of Individualism and the Five Crises of Creativity in Education

Chapter Four: 5 + 3 = 8: The Eight Barriers to Access and Equity in the Creative Classroom

Chapter Five: Making Creativity Visible: Introducing the Biography of an Idea Methodology

Chapter Six: Biography of an Idea: Biodegradaball

Chapter Seven: Biography of an Idea: Static Fashion

Chapter Eight: Participatory Creativity, Learning, and Development

Conclusion: Taking Responsibility for the Creative Classroom


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Edward P. Clapp is Senior Research Manager at Project Zero and Lecturer on Education at the Harvard Graduate School of Education, USA.


"Whatever the validity of the "great man/great woman" view of creativity, it makes creativity seem beyond the grasp of most of us. In this refreshingly innovative book, Edward Clapp puts forth a capacious view of creativity which has powerful implications for education."

--Howard Gardner, John H. and Elizabeth A. Hobbs Professor of Cognition and Education and Senior Director of Project Zero at Harvard Graduate School of Education, USA

"A must-read for all educators aiming to understand creativity and cultivate it in others. Clapp masterfully reviews the historical frames and fallacies of individual theories of creativity. His detailed depictions of how creative ideas socially emerge—ranging from the theory of relativity to hip-hop—reveal the power of collective creativity and how educators can better design experiences for it."

--Daniel Wilson, Director of Project Zero, Harvard Graduate School of Education, USA

"In Participatory Creativity, Edward P. Clapp describes the next wave of creativity theory in easily accessible terms and applies the theory to education. His work is at once sophisticated, provocative, and thoroughly rooted in practice. Few concepts are as important to education today as the participatory theories that Clapp presents. This is must-read material for teachers, educational administrators, and policymakers."

--Michael Hanchett Hanson, Director of the Masters Concentration in Creativity and Cognition at Teachers College, Columbia University, USA, and author of Worldmaking: Psychology and the Ideology of Creativity

"A fresh narrative on creativity that every teacher needs to hear. Clapp makes a compelling case that all students can participate in the creative process and offers immediately actionable steps for cultivating a community of innovation in your classroom and school."

--A.J. Juliani, author of LAUNCH and Inquiry & Innovation in the Classroom