What does it mean?
“There was once an Indian princess named Amalia…”
The photo above shows me playing a hand clapping game with school children in India. Believing we are “taught out of creativity” (Norris, 2012, pg. 300), to entice them to play the game I had prepared for them, I shared the story of princess Amalia through art based pedagogies to teach them about the history of their town. The story took place in the town of Ooty, in the jungle with tigers and monkeys, where the children lived. I took time to ask the children tell me what was going to happen next in the story, engaging their creative minds and seeing if they knew more than they thought they did. The princess being Indian and the place being familiar, created a connection and an identity for the children. I asked some of the children to act out the story as I told it, brilliant actors and actresses they took much fun in playing the part and became the characters. Just as Louise Phillips (2013) states, “listeners can connect with the characters and accompany the teller on the journey of experience, then emerge with new insight and understandings”.
Demonstrating the game to them, they smiled and laughed, picking up how to play very quickly as I allowed them to take over the role of leading each round and beating me in the end. They remembered the story I told and the game I taught very well, a successful teaching experience.
It was then that I noticed, there is a big difference between telling children what to do and leading them. Pedagogy is all about leading the child, opening their eyes through creative teaching and learning (Phillips, 2015).
Creative pedagogy is:
A two exchange of seeing, listening, wondering and dialogue (Friere, 1970)
Piirto’s five core attitudes (2012) are necessary to teach and lead children down the right path in your class: