Teaching Tips to Stimulate Creativity in the Classroom

Written by Clayton Rhodes - School of Interdisciplinary Studies

In their book, Weaving Creativity Into Every Strand of Your Curriculum, Burnett and Figliotti (2015) maintain that curiosity is a key factor in stimulating creativity in the classroom: “Curiosity cultivates intrinsic motivation – the internal motivation that simply comes with the joy and interest of the task rather than the external rewards (16).”

The authors provide a number of suggestions for encouraging curiosity in the classroom:

  1. Spend time asking open-ended questions, questions that do not have single answers
  2. Frequently ask your students what they are wondering about
  3. When students ask questions, don’t rush to give them “the answer.” First ask, “What do you think?”
  4. Encourage your students to ask questions beyond their first “Why?”
  5. Actively wonder about how your students perceive the world. When you can tap into your students’ perspectives, you can understand them in a deeper way
  6. Be aware of the interests of your students and ask questions related to those interests
  7. Acknowledge the curiosity and questioning of your students. When a student asks an interesting question, say, “That’s a great question!”
  8. Avoid overstimulation. Sometimes when we focus on simplicity, curiosity knocks (17-18)



Burnett, C. & Figliotti, J. (2015). Weaving Creativity into Every Strand of Your Curriculum. Buffalo, NY: Knowinnovation.