Volume 10 · Number 3 · Pages 388–396

< Previous Paper · Next Paper >

Learning about Urban Sustainability with Digital Stories: Promoting Collaborative Creativity from a Constructionist Perspective

Maria Daskolia, Chronis Kynigos & Katerina Makri

Download the full text in
PDF (908 kB)

> Citation > Similar > References > Add Comment

Abstract

Context: Sustainability is among major societal goals in our days. Education is acknowledged as an essential strategy for attaining sustainability by activating the creative potential within young people to understand sustainability, bring forth changes in their everyday life, and collectively envision a more sustainable future. Problem: However, teaching and learning about sustainability and sustainability-related issues is not an easy task due to the inherent complexity, ambiguity, and context-specificity of the concept. We are in need of innovative pedagogical approaches and tools that will allow us to design learning activities in which learners will be empowered to develop new, alternative interpretations of sustainability in personally and collectively meaningful ways. Method: We argue that a constructionist perspective involving the use of expressive media for digital storytelling offers an appropriate frame for designing learning activities fostering collaborative creativity in thinking and learning about urban sustainability. Our study is based on the design of a learning activity following this rationale. We adopted a qualitative approach in the collection and analysis of different sources of data with the aim to explore collaborative creativity as a learning process based on the students’ collective processes and resulting in the co-construction of new ideas and insights about sustainability, and new tangible artefacts (the digital stories) encompassing them. Results: Our analysis of the collaborative creativity exemplified in the three digital stories produced identified important creative elements with regards to the three components of a digital story (script, technical characteristics, and ideas of urban sustainability) and how they were embodied in each digital story produced as a result of the students’ joint constructionist activity. Implications: Our study provides some preliminary evidence that collaborative creativity from a constructionist perspective can stand as an appropriate framework for designing learning activities addressing the difficult concept of sustainability. There are several implications for both theory and educational practice in environmental education and education for sustainable development, constructionism, and digital storytelling in education. Moreover, our study opens up new fields for research and theory in creativity.

Key words: Sustainability, urban sustainability, collaborative creativity, constructionism, digital storytelling, learning design.

Citation

Daskolia M., Kynigos C. & Makri K. (2015) Learning about urban sustainability with digital stories: Promoting collaborative creativity from a constructionist perspective. Constructivist Foundations 10(3): 388–396. http://constructivist.info/10/3/388

Export article citation data: Plain Text · BibTex · EndNote · Reference Manager (RIS)

Similar articles

Kynigos C. (2015) Designing Constructionist E-Books: New Mediations for Creative Mathematical Thinking?

Makri K., Daskolia M. & Kynigos C. (2015) Authors’ Response: Seeking “Power” in Powerful Ideas, Systems Thinking and Affective Aspects of Learning

Boytchev P. (2015) Constructionism and Deconstructionism

Kenny V. (2011) Continuous Dialogues. Ernst von Glasersfeld’s Answers to a Wide Variety of Questioners on the Oikos Web Site 1997–2010

Brennan K. (2015) Beyond Technocentrism: Supporting Constructionism in the Classroom

References

Arnedillo-Sánchez I. (2008) The mobile digital narrative tool. In: Arnedillo-Sánchez I. & Isaias P. (eds.) Mobile learning. IADIS Press, Lisbon: 77–83. << Google Scholar

Aylett R. (2006) And they both lived happily ever after? In: Dettori G., Giannetti T., Paiva A. & Vaz A. (eds.) Technology-mediated narrative environments for learning. Sense Publishers, Rotterdam: 5–25. << Google Scholar

Benick G. (2012) Digital storytelling and diasporic identities in higher education. CELT (Collected Essays on Teaching and Learning) 5. << Google Scholar

Blewitt J. (2005) Education for sustainable development, governmentality and learning to last. Environmental Education Research 11(2): 173–185. << Google Scholar

Booth Sweeney L. (2001) When a butterfly sneezes: A guide for helping kids explore interconnections in our world through favorite stories. Pegasus Communications, Waltham MA. << Google Scholar

Booth Sweeney L. (2012) Learning to connect the dots: Developing children’s systems literacy. Solutions for a Sustainable and Desirable Future 5(3): 55–62. Available at http://www.thesolutionsjournal.com/node/1167

Bruner J. (1990) Acts of meaning. Harvard University Press, Cambridge MA. << Google Scholar

Bruner J. (1996) The culture of education. Harvard University Press, Cambridge MA. << Google Scholar

Bruner J. (2003) Making stories. Harvard University Press, Cambridge MA. << Google Scholar

Bruner J. (2004) Narratives of science. In: Scanlon E., Murphy P., Thomas J. & Whitelegg E. (eds.) Reconsidering science learning. Routledge Falmer, London: 90–98. << Google Scholar

Bugliarello G. (2006) Urban sustainability: Dilemmas, challenges and paradigms. Technology in society 28(1): 19–26. << Google Scholar

Burleson W. (2005) Developing creativity, motivation, and self-actualization with learning systems. International Journal of Human-Computer Studies 63(4–5): 436–451. << Google Scholar

Colantonio A. (2010) Urban social sustainability themes and assessment methods. Proceedings of the ICE-Urban Design and Planning 163(2): 79–88. << Google Scholar

Colella V. (2000) Participatory simulations: Building collaborative understanding through immersive dynamic modeling. Journal of the Learning Sciences 9(4): 471–500. << Google Scholar

Colella V. S., Klopfer E. & Resnick M. (2001) Adventures in modeling: Exploring complex dynamic systems with Starlogo. Teachers College Press, New York. << Google Scholar

Craft A. (2008) Studying collaborative creativity: Implications for education. Thinking skills and creativity 3(3): 241–245. << Google Scholar

Crawford C. (2005) Chris Crawford on interactive storytelling. New Riders, Berkley CA. << Google Scholar

Danish J., Peppler K., Phelps D. & Washington D. (2011) Life in the hive: Supporting inquiry into complexity within the zone of proximal development. Journal of Science Education and Technology 20(5): 454–467. << Google Scholar

Daskolia M. & Kynigos C. (2012) Applying a constructionist frame to learning about sustainability. Special issue “Higher education.” Creative Education 3: 818–823. << Google Scholar

Daskolia M., Dimos A. & Kampylis P. (2012) Secondary teachers’ conceptions of creative thinking within the context of Environmental Education. International Journal of Environmental and Science Education 7(2): 269–290. << Google Scholar

Dettori G. & Giannetti T. (2006) A concise introduction to narrative learning environments. Research Report. 2006. Available at https://halshs.archives-ouvertes.fr/hal-00190494/document.

Dettori G. & Lupi V. (2009) Using a narrative blog to support reflection in a blended course. In: Wang F. L., Fong J., Zhang L. & Lee V. S. K. (eds.) Hybrid learning and education. Lecture Notes in Computer Science 5685. Springer, Berlin: 274–283. << Google Scholar

Dettori G. & Paiva A. (2009) Narrative learning in technology-enhanced environments. In: Ludvigsen S., Balacheff N., de Jong T., Lazonder A. & Barnes S. (eds.) Technology-enhanced learning: Principles and products. Springer, Berlin: 55–69. << Google Scholar

Dettori G. (2012) Supporting learners’ interaction by means of narrative activities. In: Jia J. Y. (ed.) Educational stages and interactive learning: From kindergarten to workplace training. IGI Global, Hershey PA: 107–120. << Google Scholar

Dettori G., Giannetti T., Paiva A. & Vaz A. (eds.) (2006) Technology-Mediated Narrative Environments for Learning. Sense Publishers, Rotterdam. << Google Scholar

Dobson A. (1998) Justice and the environment: Conceptions of environmental sustainability and theories of distributive justice. Oxford University Press, Oxford. << Google Scholar

European Council (2010) Council conclusions on education for sustainable development. Brussels. Retrieved from http://consilium.europa.eu/uedocs/cms_data/docs/pressdata/en/educ/117855.pdf on 19 November 2010. << Google Scholar

Freidus N. & Hlubinka M. (2002) Digital storytelling for reflective practice in communities of learners. Newsletter ACM SIGGROUP Bulletin 23(2): 24–26. << Google Scholar

Fuglestad A. B., Healy L., Kynigos C. & Monaghan J. (2010) Working with teachers: Context and culture, teacher and technology. In: Hoyles C. & Lagrange J.-B. (eds.) Digital technologies and mathematics teaching and learning: Rethinking the terrain. Springer, New York: 293–310. << Google Scholar

Gabriel Y. & Connell N. A. D. (2010) Co-creating stories: Collaborative experiments in storytelling. Management Learning 41: 507–523. << Google Scholar

Guilford J. P. (1950) Creativity. American Psychologist 5: 444–454. << Google Scholar

Hmelo-Silver C. E. & Pfeffer M. G. (2004) Comparing expert and novice understanding of a complex system from the perspective of structures, behaviors, and functions. Cognitive Science 28(1): 127–138. << Google Scholar

Hopwood B., Mellor M., & O’Brien G. (2005) Sustainable development: Mapping different approaches. Sustainable development 13(1): 38–52. << Google Scholar

Jacobson M. J. & Wilensky U. (2006) Complex systems in education: Scientific and education importance and implications for the learning sciences. The Journal of the Learning Sciences 15(1): 11–34. << Google Scholar

John-Steiner V. (1993) Creative lives, creative tensions. Creativity Research Journal 5(1): 99–108. << Google Scholar

Jonassen D. H. (1997) Instructional design models for well-structured and ill-structured problem-solving learning outcomes. Educational Technology Research and Development 45(1): 65–94. << Google Scholar

Kafai Y. & Resnick M. (eds.) (1996) Constructionism in practice. Lawrence Erlbaum Associates Publishers, New Jersey. << Google Scholar

Kafai Y. B. (2006) Constructionism. In: Sawyer K. (ed.) Cambridge handbook of the learning sciences. Cambridge University Press, Cambridge MA: 35–46. << Google Scholar

Kangas M. (2010) Creative and playful learning: Learning through game co-creation and games in a playful learning environment. Thinking Skills and Creativity 5(1): 1–15. << Google Scholar

Kaufman J. C. & Beghetto R. A. (2009) Beyond big and little: The Four C model of creativity. Review of general psychology 13(1): 1–12. << Google Scholar

Kleiman P. (2008) Towards transformation: Conceptions of creativity in higher education. Innovations in Education and Teaching International 45(3): 209–217. << Google Scholar

Kynigos C. (2007) Half-baked logo microworlds as boundary objects in integrated design. Informatics in Education 6(2): 1–24. << Google Scholar

Kynigos C. (2007) Using half-baked microworlds to challenge teacher educators’ knowing. International Journal of Computers in Mathematics Learning 12: 87–111. << Google Scholar

Kynigos C. (2012) Niches for Constructionism: Forging connections for practice and theory. In: Kynigos C., Clayson J. & Yiannoutsou Y. (eds.) Proceedings of the international conference “Constructionism 2012.” Vivliosynergatiki, Athens: 40–51. << Google Scholar

Lambert J. (2002) Web 2.0 storytelling. Digital Diner Press, Berkeley CA. << Google Scholar

Levine A. & Alexander B. (2008) Digital storytelling: The emergence of a new genre. Available at http://www.educause.edu/ero/article/web-20-storytelling-emergence-new-genre

Loveless A. (2002) Literature review in creativity, new technologies and learning. Nesta Futurelab, Bristol. << Google Scholar

Mamykina L., Candy L. & Edmonds E. (2002) Collaborative creativity. Communications of the ACM 45(10): 96–99. << Google Scholar

Mateas M. & Sengers P. (2002) Narrative intelligence. In: Mateas M. & Sengers P. (eds.) Narrative intelligence. John Benjamins Publishing, Amsterdam: 1–25. << Google Scholar

Megill A. (1995) Relativism, or the different senses of objectivity. Academic Questions 8(3): 33–39. << Google Scholar

Milgram S. (1970) The experience of living in cities. Science 167(3924): 1461–1468. << Google Scholar

Moran S. & John-Steiner V. (2003) Creativity in the making. In: Sawyer R. K., John-Steiner V., Moran S., Sternberg R. J., Feldman D. H., Nakamura J. & Csikszentmihalyi M. (eds.) Creativity and development. Oxford University Press, Oxford: 61–90. << Google Scholar

Moran S. (2010) Creativity in school. In: Littleton K., Woods C. & Staarman J. K. (eds.) International handbook of psychology in education. Emerald Group Publishing Limited, Bingley UK: 319–359. << Google Scholar

Newman P. (1999) Sustainability and cities: Extending the metabolism model. Landscape and Urban Planning 44: 219–226. << Google Scholar

Norton B. G. (2005) Sustainability: A philosophy of adaptive ecosystem management. University of Chicago Press, Chicago. << Google Scholar

Ogle R. (2007) Smart world: Breakthrough creativity and the new science of ideas. Harvard Business School Press, Boston, MA. << Google Scholar

Papert S. & Harel I. (1991) Preface: Situating constructionism. In: Harel I. & Papert S. (eds.) Constructionism: Research reports and essays, 1985–1990. Ablex: Norwood NJ: 1–11. << Google Scholar

Papert S. (1980) Mindstorms: Children, computers, and powerful ideas. Basic Books, New York. << Google Scholar

Papert S. (1993) The children’s machine. Rethinking school in the age of the computer. Basic Books, New York. << Google Scholar

Peppler K., Santo R., Gresalfi M. & Salen Tekinbaş K. (2014) Script changers: Digital storytelling with Scratch. MIT Press, Cambridge MA. << Google Scholar

Picard R. W., Papert S., Bender W., Blumberg B., Breazeal C., Cavallo D., Machover T., Resnick M., Roy T. & Strohecker C. (2004) Affective learning: a manifesto. BT Technology Journal 22(4): 253–269. << Google Scholar

Polkinghorne D. (1988) Narrative knowing and the human sciences. State University of New York Press, New York NY. << Google Scholar

Resnick M. (1996) Distributed constructionism. In: Edelson D. C. & Domeshek E. A. (eds.) Proceedings of the 1996 international conference on Learning sciences (ICLS ’96) International Society of the Learning Sciences, Charlottesville, VA: 280–284. << Google Scholar

Resnick M., Maloney J., Monroy-Hernández A., Rusk N., Eastmond E., Brennan K., Millner A., Rosenbaum E., Silver J., Silverman B. & Kafai Y. (2009) Scratch: Programming for all. Communications of the ACM 52(11): 60–67. << Google Scholar

Roseland M. (2012) Toward sustainable communities: Solutions for citizens and their governments. Volume 6. New Society Publishers, Gabriola Island BC. << Google Scholar

Santoro F. M. & Brezillon P. (2005) Towards the narrative approach to collect group knowledge and context. In: Zaraté P., Soubie J. L., Borges M. R. S. & Pino J. A. (eds.) Workshop “Context and Groupware” in conjunction with The Fifth International and Interdisciplinary Conference on Modeling and Using Context (CONTEXT–05), 5–8 July 2005, Paris, France. Available at http://ceur-ws.org/Vol-133/CSGC_No02_Santoro.pdf

Sawyer R. K. (2006) Educating for innovation. Thinking Skills and Creativity 1: 41–48. << Google Scholar

Schneider F., Kallis G. & Martinez-Alier J. (2010) Crisis or opportunity? Economic degrowth for social equity and ecological sustainability. Introduction to this special issue. Journal of cleaner production 18(6): 511–518. << Google Scholar

Schraw G. & Moshman D. (1995) Metacognitive theories. Educational Psychology Review 7(4): 351–371. << Google Scholar

Sharples M., Milrad M., Arnedillo Sánchez I. & Vavoula G. (2009) Mobile learning: Small devices, big issues. In: Balacheff N., Ludvigsen S., de Jong T., Lazonder A. & Barnes S. (eds.) Technology enhanced learning: Principles and products. Springer, Heidelberg: 233–249. << Google Scholar

Siemens G. (2005) Connectivism: A learning theory for the digital age. International Journal of Instructional Technology and Distance Learning 2(1): 1–7. << Google Scholar

Simonton D. K. (2010) Creativity in highly eminent individuals. In: Kaufman J. C. & Sternberg R. J. (eds.) The Cambridge handbook of creativity. Cambridge University Press, Cambridge: 174–188. << Google Scholar

Sullivan F. R. (2011) Serious and playful inquiry: Epistemological aspects of collaborative creativity. Educational Technology & Society 14(1): 55–65. << Google Scholar

UNESCO (2005) UN Decade of Education for Sustainable Development 2005–2014. International Implementation Scheme – Draft. UNESCO, Paris. << Google Scholar

Van Kamp I., Leidelmeijer K., Marsman G. & De Hollander A. (2003) Urban environmental quality and human well-being: Towards a conceptual framework and demarcation of concepts; a literature study. Landscape and urban planning 65(1): 5–18. << Google Scholar

Vass E. (2007) Exploring processes of collaborative creativity: The role of emotions in children’s joint creative writing. Thinking Skills and Creativity 2(2): 107–117. << Google Scholar

Wals A. E. J. (2010) Mirroring, gestaltswitching and transformative social learning: Stepping stones for developing sustainability competence. International Journal of Sustainability in Higher Education 11(4): 380–390. << Google Scholar

Ward T. B., Patterson M. J. & Sifonis C. M. (2004) The role of specificity and abstraction in creative idea generation. Creativity Research Journal 16(1): 1–9. << Google Scholar

Warr A. & O’Neill E. (2005) Understanding design as a social creative process. In: Proceedings of the Fifth Conference on Creativity & Cognition. ACM Press, New York: 118–127. << Google Scholar

Wilensky U. & Resnick M. (1999) Thinking in levels: A dynamic systems perspective to making sense of the world. Journal of Science and Technology 8(1): 3–19. << Google Scholar

Comments: 0

To stay informed about comments to this publication and post comments yourself, please log in first.