Thursday, April 25, 2013

creativity #3, john willshire

remember tina at colour living?  she introduced us to john willshire.  
he's founder of smithery, and devoted to living a creative life.
he likes freedom and inventing a way on the fly, but did categorize his process in three steps -



Assess "look in unexpected corners.  keep looking, soaking things in.  don't just do something, stand there."  Observe.
Build - emphasizes the link between the hand and head.  "making is thinking" - richard sennett
Cultivate - get your work out into the world and see what happens.

in the end he says that it's not really a process, but an anti-process.  "in an age where so much is changing so quickly, perhaps the last thing we need is to tie ourselves down with another set of constraints."

okay.  at the same time, his ABCs work in the classroom!

Assess - always.  in montessori classrooms, we observe.  stand back and watch.  
Build - montessori is all about using the hands to build learning through concrete experiences.  for instance, in our study of invertebrates, we learned about mollusks - snails, clams, slugs, octopi.  friday, after most children had finished their individual and group projects, we ate clams.  
Cultivate - john seems to be saying, allow for change.  that sounds perfect for teachers, as students are completely different by the end of the school year.  taller, more confident, itching to get outside.  flexible structure is needed.  

happy thursday!


  1. Hi Noreen, yes Tina's post on John Willshire was fabulous. Thank you for putting it in an education context for us..very interesting.

  2. A.B.C... I think it can be applied to almost all situations. xx
    p.s your study of invertebrates sounds like a fun way to learn xx

  3. I love that you interpret these creative process posts into an educational context, in particular the Montessori method!

    Great that after studying invertebrates, you ate clams. Bring it to life....

    Thank you Noreen. I've emailed Mike your post and will also let John see this!


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