When we describe student work as "innovative" or "creative," what do we mean? Maybe students collected information in an unusual way. Maybe their final presentation was visually exciting. Maybe they personalized the challenge, broke a few rules, or invented an unfamiliar solution. Would a student project need accomplish all these things – or just a few – to earn the distinction of being "innovative"?
These are healthy questions that may represent an unavoidable dilemma in assessment. But left unanswered, they have the potential to drain teachers' motivation (or ability) to design and implement new routines to foster innovation.
A promising start comes from the Buck Institute for Education, a non-profit organization that supports gold-standard project-based learning. Their creativity & innovation rubrics are CCSS aligned, and can be adapted for use in any setting:
- 6-12 Creativity & Innovation Rubric
- 3-5 Creativity & Innovation Rubric
- K-2 Creativity & Innovation Rubric
Most are downloadable as either a PDF or Doc.
p.s. Just after I posted this, BIE tweeted a curated list of resources for Creativity in PBL.