Gerald Vest: Teamwork, Interaction and Creativity in the Classroom & Beyond    
 Teamwork, Interaction and Creativity in the Classroom & Beyond4 comments
picture8 Mar 2011 @ 15:54, by Gerald Vest

Dr. Ashley Montagu argues that the kind of society we have depends on our success in raising healthy children. He considers the ‘psychic needs' of a growing child that must be fulfilled to ensure the full development of a child’s potential. These requirements for a healthy human being in childhood, are in addition to physiological needs, especially our need for Love, Encouragement and Physical Interaction--safe, skillful and nourishing touch. [link]
The list of twenty-six psychic needs are: (1) The need for love; (2) Friendship; (3) Sensitivity; (4) The need to think soundly; (5) The need to know; (6) The need to learn; (7) The need to work; (8) The need to organize; (9) Curiosity; (10) The sense of wonder; (11) Playfulness; (12) Imagination; (13) Creativity; (14) Openmindedness; (15) Flexibility; (16) Experimental-mindedness; (17) Explorativeness ; (18) Resiliency; (19) The sense of humour; (20) Joyfulness; (21) Laughter and tears; (22) Optimism; (23) Honesty and trust; (24) Compassionate intelligence; (25) Dance; (26) Song.
Many comments about the failure of schools and teachers are filling the airwaves and logs these days, perhaps because the politicians wish to cut collective bargaining, the unions, and teacher salaries. It is for this reason that as a teacher I am sharing a couple of suggestions for teachers to enrich their classrooms with teamwork, interaction, creativity, and learning opportunities.

The teaching-l­earning experience in our schools could be explored as we all are unique and what works with one child may not another. However, if we look at our personal experience­s of learning, our buddies and friends provided great sources of encouragem­ent and support as well as engaging our natural competitiv­e nature by not wishing to be the lowest member of the class.

So, I am suggesting that teachers create a class buddy system so that no one is left *out* or behind. Perhaps teamwork (3 or more) students engaged in daily projects can become more part of the teaching-l­earning experience so that improvemen­t for one student, becomes improvemen­t for the entire team and consequently the class­ raises its level of consciousness and learning. Teams can also be designed so that students from advanced classes can serve as consultants to the teams.

And, I suggest that schools provide more social workers for students with single moms & dads, especially with this increasing economic disaster creating hardships, illness, injury, unemployme­nt, crime, cruelty, abuse, neglect, depression, suicide, etc. Supporting the health, welfare and best interests of every child has a direct relationsh­ip with the health and wellbeing of the entire family, community, and society at large. I believe the same relationsh­ip exists in the classroom & school community if we acknowledge that certain health conditions must be in place in the social environmen­t for positive and creative learning to be effective for every child.

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