Learning Creatively: Interest-Driven Forms Of Media Use

Learning creatively through interest-driven forms of media use

by Vanessa

Creativity has taken up the mantle as a key 21st century skill charged with the responsibility of developing our students as the innovative thinkers needed for contemporary and future problem-solving. Networked publics are one of the affordances of digital culture that is enabling creativity generation and agency for our learners like never before. Tinkering in readily accessible creative media production sites engages peer-based learning and it is the reciprocity of the peer-based exchange that is propelling new ways of learning in new distributed sites of expertise. Bridging of the digital divide that exists between in-school and out-of-school use, as well as the creativity divide, presents key challenges for educators.

The processes of interest-driven genres of participatory culture drive creative learning in unique ways and are having powerful effects beyond the classroom in developing student agency and identity. Building our own digital wisdom so that we teach for creativity means we need to be alive to the ways in which participatory culture reconfigures expertise and institutional circuits of knowledge.

The purpose of this paper is to provide the scholarly basis for a resource that will deepen understandings of teacher supervisors in relation to peer-based learning in online collectives so that they can better support students' creative enrichment.

This initial exploration focuses on three key ideas in the research literature:
• The significance of creativity in contemporary education and the role of ‘play’ in creativity cultivation.
• Doing schooling differently and investigating how technologies disrupt the traditional relationships of teacher-student; school-knowledge; children-knowledge; learners-communities.
• The affordances of digital ‘networked publics’ that enable agency in student learning.

Key thinkers

danah boyd – social media scholar and youth researcher
John Seely Brown – designer of thinking for a constantly changing world
Mizuko Ito – cultural anthropologist of technology use
Patricia Lange – researcher of media use to express technical identities and accomplish civic engagement
Dilan D. Mahendran - anthropological inquiry of Information Technology
Sir Ken Robinson – guru of innovation and creativity TED talks

Key resources

Animemusicvideos.org A community dedicated to the creation, discussion, and general enjoyment of fan-made anime music videos

YouTube user generated video-sharing website

FanFiction.net fanfiction forum where fanfic writers and readers gather to share their passion

deviantART online community showcasing various forms of user-made artwork

FictionPress short story, fiction, and poetry archive and online sharing community for writers and readers


collectives, creativity, digital culture, imaginative play, interest-driven media use, networked publics, participatory culture, peer-based learning