Abstract 4-Volume 7, Number 3, Winter 2012

Practicing Creative Thinking Skills by Making Creative Products Related to Economic Issues

Audrey C. Rule

Zaid A. Alkouri

Shelly J. Criswell

Judith L. Evans

Angela N. Hileman

Harun Parpucu

Bin Ruan

Beth Dykstra Van Meeteren

Jill Uhlenberg

Olga S. Vasileva


Ksenia S. Zhbanova

University of Northern Iowa



Students need to learn and practice creative thinking skills to ensure success in solving everyday, national, and global problems that include those affecting economic issues.  The global economy requires workers to have research and innovation skills that depend upon creativity.  However, many current educational programs focus mostly on factual content, doing little to inspire or apply the creative process.  The project presented here shows an engaging activity that combines creative thinking skills with economic content.  Although the activity occurred in a college course on creativity theory and practice, this challenging game can be easily adapted and embedded in the Kindergarten-12 social studies curriculum.  This article discusses the set-up of the activity and its connection to creativity theory and curriculum standards.  It showcases the work of eleven participants who each made a unique object or scene from a given set of craft and recycled materials, subsequently relating the resulting product to a current economic issue.  Photographs of the resulting products are provided along with descriptions of the theme of each item, its connection to economics, and creative aspects of the work.  Suggestions for adaptation to the Kindergarten-12 classroom are given.


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