Interactive Art Applications (I-Apps) in the Development of Younger Learners' Creative Thinking

Interactive Art Applications (I-Apps) in the Development of Younger Learners' Creative Thinking

Sylvia Vincent Stavridi (Bibliotheca Alexandrina, Egypt)
Copyright: © 2017 |Pages: 14
DOI: 10.4018/978-1-5225-2101-3.ch012
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Interactive art-based application is an informal approach to new creative learning methods, in which younger students are visually stimulated, and actively engaged to discover nature and grasp the original concept of core content areas in academic disciplines, such as science, mathematics and geometry from a broad perspective. This chapter tries to explore the means to further young children's creative thinking in today's techno-scientific world. But much of the analysis holds more generally for the intersection between visual art and interactive aesthetics, and how the exploration of visual art forms shapes new ways for primary school students to reform their creative practice to effectively interact in an increasingly smart setting. The chapter then concludes with a focus on the attribution of aesthetic value in integrating digital technologies with human ideas as an interactive tool to infuse immersive visual thinking into children's fun learning apps.
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Children at younger ages are living in a new technologically automated open access driven world where technology has become an integral part of their daily lives. As they become increasingly more reliant and immersed in technology, educational thinking has to remotely adjust to incorporate the best innovative practices in elementary education and promote the active involvement of younger learners in a technology-learning process that is imaginative and stimulating. Educational thinking has to cater for the ability to think in more broad, adventurous and clear ways, and to reason critically and innovatively. Thus, teachers are challenged to reconsider the features of efficient creative learning methods to further skew the curriculum. Looking into visual art provides a context particularly well-suited for visual reasoning and cultivating thinking, because works of art demand thoughtful attention to discover what it has to show and say.

Within this context, the continuous exploration of new ideas and newer artistic teaching methods reflects the creative thinking process to improve learning outcomes for children (Wright, 2010; Winner, Goldstein, & Vincent, 2013). The methodological combination of certain visual components combining arts with a variety of digital technologies can be carried out to extend knowledge and allow continuous exploration of new ideas. This in turn reinforces children’s creative thinking process (Wright, 2010; Winner et al, 2013; Sharp, 2001). However, art-based interactive applications do not seem to have been specifically developed for use by elementary school students. There is even less research regarding proper pedagogy related to the development of appropriate instructional design, especially for software applications that address the creation of visual material.

The article approaches the subject for the way the aesthetics of interactive visual art is viewed and represented in the technological learning practices within the current national education system. Furthermore the article overviews art-based educational applications which should be brought into play activities at a classroom level to give younger learners the flexibility to display information in different ways to enhance their spontaneous levels of creativity. Initial materials were generated to comprise overviews of research into creative thinking, art aesthetic, and interactivity in order to create an intimate correspondence between specific visual art forms and academic language, in scientific contexts.

After considerable debate on creativity and creative thinking, contemporary approach to creativity research has adopted a definition that creativity is the human process of generating ideas that are both unusual and significant (Mishra & Singh, 2011); whereas creative thinking, aka innovative, encompasses the acts of inquiring, exploring, imagining the outcome, taking risks, reflecting, and innovating that focuses on the nature of interactions between the human and medium rather than upon outcomes (Ross, 1989; Erik, Markus, Michael, & Greg, 2011). Hence an artful educator and teacher should pay great regard on the thinking process and how to engage younger learners emotionally, intellectually, and not to settle with one perspective to nourish their natural creativity and adaptability. According to Ross (1989), flexibility is the feature of a creative act; in turn the absence of any rules encourages children to move freely from one mode to another to envision most effectively and re-present what they know. Abbs (1989) believes that going beyond the context of the formal approaches offers an aesthetically pleasing space where children can persistently explore, experiment, and make connections in each aspect.

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