Category Archives: Originality

Willy’s Stories

Willy’s Stories”

Willy’s Stories is written and illustrated by British Children’s Laureate (2009-2011) Anthony Browne. Each day Willy walks through these doors and something incredible happens.

Each of the ten stories begin in such a way as to disguise a well-known classic story, inserting the reader into a new story and then having the reader continue the story.

At the end of the book, the ten classic tales are revealed.

This book promotes imagination and originality.

TITLE: Willy’s Stories

AUTHOR: Anthony Browne, British Children’s Laureate 2009-2011

ILLUSTRATOR: Anthony Browne

PUBLISHER: Candlewick Press, 2014

AGE GROUP: 6-8

CREATIVE COMPONENTS: imagination, originality

LEARNING EXTENSIONS:

1) Pick a classic tale. Rewrite the beginning of this story. See if your friends can guess what classic tale it is.

2) Create your own fairy tale. Combine characters from two different classic stories and put them together in a story.

 EXTENDING CONNECTIONS:

To learn more about author/illustrator Anthony Browne, visit:

http://www.anthonybrownebooks.com

Creative Thinking Prompt: Snow Words

Creative Thinking Prompt: Create Your Own Snow Words

Many countries have different words for different types of snow. To date the Sami culture  of Finland, Norway, Sweden and Russia, are known to have 180 words to describe snow while the Scottish have over 413 words for snow.

http://www.k-international.com/blog/which-language-has-the-most-words-for-snow/

Skelf – snowflake (Scotland)

Snjór/Snær: Snow (Icelandic)

Ciegar: Snowfield which has been trampled and dug up by reindeer (Sami)

Lappvante- thick falling snow (Swedish)

Aputi: snow on the ground (Inuit/Yupik)

Creative Thinking Prompt: Create Your Own Snow Words

  1. Brainstorm different types of snow. Spark your imagination by looking at how other countries and cultures view snow.
  2. Invent 10 new words to describe different types of snow. Notice how your words sound and look. What if you used marks above vowels, how would that change the sound of your words?
  3. How would people unfamiliar with your language learn your new language?

For extra fun, experiment by making snow playdough using two ingredients.

SNOW DOUGH RECIPE 1

Equal amounts of each:

Cornstarch

Unscented Lotion

Optional:

Glitter and/or a drop of Peppermint Extract or Oil

SNOW PLAY DOUGH RECIPE 2 using baking soda and hair conditioner:

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=AZbjrYcNpPs

Creative Thinking Prompt: Design A Chair That’s You

Creative Thinking Prompt: Design A Chair That’s You

A chair is a commonly used object. Here are some truly unique ones.

 rhino, walrus, octopus

 books and CDs

Creative Thinking Prompt: Design a chair that represents you. Use your imagination to create a chair that doesn’t resemble a traditional chair. Make it as original as you. What are some different types of chairs (rocking chair, throne, etc.)? What materials would you use and why? What is the purpose of your chair? What colors will you use? How will you decorate/embellish your chair? How will you use your chair? How many legs will your chair have? Will your chair have a back? What will the back look like? How will the seat of your chair be designed? Sketch your chair design.

To view some more interesting chairs, visit:

http://www.digsdigs.com/50-awesome-creative-chair-designs/

https://www.designswan.com/archives/10-ultra-cool-chairs-design.html

Creative Thinking Prompt: Installation Artist Chiharu Shiota

Creative Thinking Prompt: Installation Artist Chiharu Shiota

Photo credit: Sunhi Mang

Artist Chiharu Shiota uses yarn and repurposed materials to create powerful, provoking art.

The Key in the Hand  2015 at the 56th Venice Biennale

https://creators.vice.com/en_us/article/a-cloud-of-keys-and-memories-hangs-over-venice

Chiharu Shiota suspends over 50,000 keys collected from world-wide donors with weaved yarn over a wooden boat.  The keys represent feelings and memories while the red yarn represents lines of memory and how they relate to one another.

Creative Thinking Prompt:  In what ways might you use a key besides opening a door? Brainstorm a list of possibilities of what you can do with a key. What else can a key represent? How might you incorporate keys into an art project?

EXTENDED CONNECTIONS:

To learn more about Chiharu Shiota and her work, visit:

http://www.chiharu-shiota.com/en/

Infinity Lines  2017 at Savannah College of Art and Design

https://creators.vice.com/en_us/article/chiharu-shiota-spiderweb-red-thread-memories

What’s That Noise? (This Book Is Calling You…)

What’s That Noise? (This Book Is Calling You…)

An interactive sensory book, What’s That Noise?, has readers use their fingers to go on an adventure.

Fingers make sounds as they follow the trail of dashed lines and dots to catch the noise that is calling out.

Watch out for what’s hiding at the end of this book!

This book promotes creativity and originality.

TITLE: What’s That Noise?”

AUTHOR: Isabel Minhós Martins

ILLUSTRATOR: Madalena Matoso

PUBLISHER: Tate Publishing, 2016

AGE GROUP: 4-6

CREATIVE COMPONENTS: creativity, originality

LEARNING EXTENSIONS:

1) Go on a sound walk with someone. During your walk, listen for all the noises you hear. Both you and your friend each make a list of the sounds. Did you both hear the same sounds? The next day go on the same walk and see if you hear the same sounds or new ones.

2) Think up an invention that someone can use while going on a trip. What is the purpose of your invention? What type(s) of sound would your invention make? Name your invention.

3) Pretend you are traveling to another country or a different city or a different part of town than the one you live in. What types of noises might you hear?

EXTENDING CONNECTIONS:

To learn more about author Isabel Minhós Martins, visit:

http://www.finefinebooks.com/2012/05/planeta-tangerina-interview-with-isabel.html

To learn more about illustrator, visit:

https://fishinkblog.com/2011/03/09/madalena-matoso-childrens-illustrator-from-portugal/

The Catawampus Cat

The Catawampus Cat

The new cat enters the town walking askew.

The grocer and his wife try to straighten out the cat but to no avail. They wonder what is wrong with the cat. “Maybe he’s noticing something.” So they tilt their heads and discover something.

As the tilted cat strolls through town, people discover they can see better from different angles. Soon the entire town has gone askew. Then the cat stretches and straightens himself out, once again catawampus.

This book promotes originality, perspective, and being unique.

TITLE: The Catawampus Cat

AUTHOR: Jason Carter Eaton

ILLUSTRATOR: Gus Gordon

PUBLISHER: Crown Books for Young Readers, 2017

AGE GROUP: 6-9

CREATIVE COMPONENTS: originality, perspective, unique

LEARNING EXTENSIONS:

1) Brainstorm ways to see the world around you differently by asking how else might I see things around me.

Here are a few thoughts to get you started:

ride a Tilt-a-Whirl

spin on a Sit-and-Spin slow and fast

use a protractor to create an image from multiple angles

hang upside down from the monkey bars at the playground

2) Grab a dictionary and find unusual words. Make a list of these uncommon words with their definitions. Choose one of the words to create a character and/or story.

EXTENDING CONNECTIONS:

To learn more about author Jason Carter Eaton, visit:

http://www.candlewick.com/book_files/0763663077.ban.1.pdf

To learn more about illustrator Gus Gordon, visit:

http://www.gusgordon.com

Creative Thinking Prompt: Reinvent the Wheel

Creative Thinking Prompt: Reinvent the Wheel

Originality, an elemental component of creative thinking, takes the usual and makes it unusual. Let’s take the wheel, a common object, and make it original.

What makes a wheel a wheel?

Make a list of all the different types of wheels.

What traits do all wheels have in common?

Brainstorm different ways or purposes that a wheel can be used.

Then, use SCAMPER to reinvent the wheel.

S = Substitute:  Remove some part and replace it with something else.

C = Combination:  Join or force together two or more elements of your subject to develop a solution.

A = Adapt:  Change some part so that it works where before it didn’t work.

M = Magnify or modify:  Consider the attributes of the subject and change them. Attributes include: size, shape, other dimensions, texture, color, position, etc.

P = Put to other uses:  Think about your subject – why it exists, what it is used for, what it’s supposed to do. Then think up new and unusual purposes.            

E = Eliminate:  Remove any or all elements of the subject to find another solution.

R = Rearrange or reverse:  Look at the subject from different perspectivesTurn it upside-down, inside-out. Make it go backwards, against the direction it was intended to go or be used. Similar to Reverse, modify the order of operations or any other hierarchy involved.

SCAMPER was developed by Bob Eberle based upon Alex Osborn’s creating thinking questions. Alex Osborn is the originator of brainstorming. Scamper is based upon seven creative thinking principles. Each principle views your idea in a different manner. By asking questions related to each principle, Scamper gets you thinking about which areas of your idea you can improve.

ABC Pasta: An Entertaining Alphabet

ABC Pasta: An Entertaining Alphabet”

An ABC circus that good enough to eat!

Author/illustrator Juana Medina’s pasta characters and use of alliteration create a very entertaining way to learn the alphabet.

This book promotes creativity, originality, and flexible thinking.

TITLE: ABC Pasta: An Entertaining Alphabet

AUTHOR: Juana Medina

ILLUSTRATOR: Juana Medina

PUBLISHER: Viking, 2017

AGE GROUP: 4-6

CREATIVE COMPONENTS: creativity, originality, flexible thinking

LEARNING EXTENSIONS:

1) Pick a food group. Use that food to create a variety of characters.

2) Using dried pasta or cooked spaghetti, form letters of the alphabet.

3) Invent your own pasta characters and tell their stories.

 EXTENDING CONNECTIONS:

To learn more about author/illustrator Juana Medina, visit:

http://www.juanamedina.com

I also love this counting salad book by Juana Medina.

Creative Thinking Prompt: The Green Blob

Creative Thinking Prompt:  The Green Blob

Brainstorm a list of at least 100 things that are green. Circle the most unusual ones.

Brainstorm a list of at least 100 things that move. Circle the most unusual ones.

Now take one circled item from each list and combine them to invent The Green Blob.

Your green blob can be anything – a thing, a creature, a storybook character, or a new invention.

Sketch out your blob.

What are the characteristics of your blob?

What makes your blob unique?

What does your blob do?

Name your blob.

EXTENDED LEARNING CONNECTIONS:

Just for fun. To make green slime (recipe included), visit:

Kids in the Kitchen: Homemade Slime!

What Pete Ate A – Z

What Pete Ate A – Z”

WHAT PETE ATE A – Z is not your typical alphabet book! This ABC story follows Pete the Dog as he devours a myriad of things, which he shouldn’t eat such as an accordion, a camera, a pocketbook, and everything to make an egg sandwich. Doesn’t Pete know the difference between edible and inedible?

The letter “G.”

Here’s Pete! What a dog!

This book promotes humor, creativity, imagination, and originality.

TITLE: What Pete Ate A – Z

AUTHOR: Maira Kalman

ILLUSTRATOR: Maira Kalman

PUBLISHER: G. P. Putnam’s Sons, 2001

AGE GROUP: 5-8

CREATIVE COMPONENTS: humor, creativity, originality, imagination

LEARNING EXTENSIONS:

1) Pick a letter from the alphabet. Brainstorm a list of inedible items that Pete the Dog could eat. Now write a tongue twister about Pete eating some of those items.

2) What happens to Pete at the end of the book after he’s eaten all those inedible things? Write an ending to Pete’s alphabet eating journey.

EXTENDING CONNECTIONS:

To learn more about author/illustrator Maira Kalman, visit:

http://www.mairakalman.com/books/children/