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A cognitive psychologist and author says educators should look at “messy minds” in a positive way because students need time for trial and error before they show progress.

Scott Barry Kaufman, the Scientific Director of The Imagination Institute, talked about how artists, innovators, inventors, and even students who show creativity in the classroom think and do things differently. Kaufman says some of the most creative students are open to new experiences, have a flexible self-view, and believe they control their own achievement. In short, they show resiliency. “No matter what is bad in life, the gratitude we cultivate in life…can help anyone,” Kaufman said.

Kaufman pic

To close his address to the Mission: InstructureCon 0017 audience, Kaufman gave five ways to help students develop creative talents:

  1. Allow time for reflective daydreaming
  2. Support harmonious passion
  3. Encourage a diversity of experiences
  4. Encourage risk-taking/trial-and-error
  5. Encourage thinking differently