Creativity for jobs and leadership
4. Creativity for Peacebuilding and Extremism-prevention Clubs
1. Creativity Clubs Description
MASK Creativity Clubs:
The learning goal is to strengthen students' creativity and teach them practical steps of applying creativity in real-life.
MASK believes that:
What is 'CREATIVITY and INNOVATION'?
'Creativity and innovation' is not 'the arts'. A type of intelligence, it is the ability to identify problems and to generate and implement new original solutions. In the 21st century, when technology radically changes the way we live and work, the creativity and innovation competency has a huge implication for our survival, success, and future society. 'Creativity and innovation' is a transferable skill that can be effectively taught and learned.
CREATIVITY and INNOVATION can be also called RESOURCEFULNESS, ORIGINALITY, INVENTIVENESS, INGENUITY, IMAGINATION, OUTSIDE-BOX THINKING, VALUE-CREATION, VISION, INDIVIDUALITY, INITIATIVE, INSIGHT, GENIUS, RISK-TAKING, PERSONAL EFFECTIVENESS, and OPTIMIZATION.
Students learn the MASK ‘Creatvity Skills Set’:
People with the positive beliefs about creativity:
People with the creative skills:
Creativity ethics. People who are ethic in their creativity:
MASK Learning Activities include:
Creative-thinking techniques and strategies such as:
MASK Typical Workshop Template:
2. Creativity Clubs in early education
It is critically important to start creativity-learning in early childhood when imagination and playfulness are naturally rife. Neglecting children’s creativity erodes it, putting them at a serious disadvantage. Children and young people can struggle to adapt, solve problems, think up any new imaginative ideas and alternatives, understand concepts and apply them in different situations, plan ahead and achieve goals. They can feel disempowered, have low productivity and self-worth.
MASK Creativity Clubs works with children aged 3-12 years old. Workshops are held once or twice a week in schools, after-school. Duration of workshops ranges from 30 to 45 min. Because art practice is the most effective way to nurture creativity in children, Creativity Clubs Learning Activities focus on art practices. However, any sphere of human activity is open to creativity-learning, not only arts. Learning takes place in the MASK 'Creative Learning Environment’ which is playfulness, enthusiastic encouragement, and structure (read more in 'creativity-facilitators training' below).
Former students say:
“MASK developed my habit of innovating. Creativity made me successful beyond my dreams.” Hellen Gichuki, 21
“Creative people look at the world in a different way. This should be nurtured from the beginning as we, the MASK members, do.” James Karenjo Ndungu, 14
3. Creativity for Entrepreneurship and Leadership Clubs (CEL)
As the technology of the 21-century radically changes the way we live and work, creativity becomes critical to preparing young people for the jobs of tomorrow and a top skill sought by employers. There are millions of young people aged 18-25 are unemployed, 6 million in Kenya alone. However, a creativity training given to unemployed young people increases their employability five times, according to the creativity authority Dr Edward De Bono.
CEL works with students aged 12 to 25 years old. The duration of the workshops is 1-1.5 hours.
CEL aims to enable students to:
Students learn the MASK Creativity Skills Set, and practice the MASK’s ‘practical creativity' framework.
CEL Learning Activities:
Stage 1: Experimental art practices and creative-thinking techniques and strategies
Stage 2: Solving problems in schools or communities that affect students’ daily life.
Students learn and practice the MASK’s ‘practical creativity' framework '5 Steps for Application of Creativity in Real-life':
The CEL graduates receive 'Creativity Passports' and join the 'Young People - The Creative Nation'.
"MASK made me into a successful entrepreneur and a leader. My village elders invite me to their meetings - although I am so young - and ask me to give them good ideas that can improve our community. I feel respected. I feel I am making the difference. I love this creativity! But before MASK came, I did not know I was creative!" Joel Gatua, 21
4. Creativity for Peace-building and Extremism-prevention Clubs
Many countries experience ethnic, political, or religious conflicts. Creativity is the basis for education for peace and tolerance. Teaching children and young people to imagine new effective solutions for peace is the foundation for a prosperous future.
The learning goal is to strengthen students' Creative Skill Set and to steer them towards social innovation for peace and tolerance.
Students learn the MASK Creativity Skills Set, and undertake the Learning Activities that focus on creative art practices (visual arts, music, performance, writing, etc.) that aim to develop:
The clubs are either organised in a series of sessions to focus intensely on the relevant topics, or the topics are incorporated in the MASK’s Creativity and CEL Clubs programmes.
MASK collaborates with local and national government and peace-building NGOs in Kenya. Working in more than 25 schools across different ethnics and religions, MASK acted as a link between those communities.
“Through peaceful pictures we promote peace. We exchange ideas and resolve the disagreements peacefully.” Patrick Mwaura, 15
“The workshops make me so happy. They enable us to maintain peace. I learnt to communicate ideas visually.” Naftary Maina, 15
“MASK helped me to express ideas, and to promote peace between different tribes who are in conflict.” Benson Kinyantui, 13
“Being creative can help me to educate communities and lead them to peace.” Peter Kimani, 17
5. Creativity Camps
MASK's residential Creativity Camps are organised during school holidays for students aged 16-25.
First Creativity Camp was organised in May 2011 in Nairobi. Participants met with the Kenyan Minister for Culture, The Hon, Ole Ntimama, and the Ministry's Director of Culture, Gladys Gatheru.
"I liked being creative since I was little. I liked experimenting and imagining new things. It was very hard for me because my family did not support this activity considering it being unworthy. Participating in the MASK Creativity Camp helped my family to support me and to be proud of my creativity." Irungu James Kungu, 19.
6. Creativity Facilitators Training
A skilled facilitator is essential to creativity-learning. MASK has been training schoolteachers, artists, professionals, and former MASK students to facilitate MASK's creativity-learning workshops.
MASK's Creativity Environment Toolkit
Facilitators should encourage:
Facilitators should avoid:
Facilitators assess and monitor:
Facilitators record and report in a logbook and photo/video log:
School teachers say:
"In MASK Clubs children discover their hidden talents."
"MASK workshops stimulate children’s creativity."
What the others say about creativity:
Useful information: reports and surveys about 'creativity and innovation' :
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MASK is a UK Charity Commission registered charity No 1128734