Resist! Your Creativity Depends on It
When I was a new teacher, I remember reading Vygotsky. His thoughts about the Zone of Proximal Development were particularly intriguing, suggesting that we learn best when we are pushed to the edge of our competencies.
Being pushed OVER the edge? Not so useful. Finding the balance, the "cutting edge," or the "learning edge" as it were, is the challenge.
For this reason, we need others. Not huge disassociated groups of others, but others who engage with us closely and dynamically.
While I have gotten very excited about Piaget's ideas, which focus more on self-initiated learning, I'm just now coming back to Vygotsky and the thought that social interaction is critical for learning.
In regards to home education, this means I'm looking for ways to get my girls closer to the edge of their competencies, through new social opportunities. Most likely I'll sign them both up for Comedy Improv classes this Fall. My younger daughter tried Comedy Improv in a camp a few weeks ago, and it has such wonderful possibilities, offering "learning edge" experiences on both the cognitive and social levels. (Plus, it's collaborative, which I love. :)
Resistance, which Psyblog notes is best for optimal creativity, is built in to a "learning edge" type experience. So this Fall, we shall resist (albeit alongside laughter).
For more thoughts on the value of Resistance, but in a work context, check out my post today at Bibledude.net. Call Me Glinda: Tension and Relief for Successful Work Teams