Creating joy through learning
Learning through love is the philosophy behind my work. Creative literacy – creating visual memories and learning words and concepts through art – has been transforming reading in my workshops.
Experiencing the joy of learning is the key to meaningful learning. Emotions and the feeling of joy play a huge part in learning, Finnish research with seven-year-old children has highlighted.
Creating joy, or feeling the love when learning, according to the Finnish research, happens when we:
- Encourage mastery of a skill, not simply the performance of it;
- Allow children the freedom to make decisions about how they will learn and which resources they use;
- Encourage children to evaluate their learning – talking about what works for them;
- Allow children the space and time to finish activities and reflect upon it.
Using art and creative activities to bring life to spelling and reading offers a way to incorporate all those joy-fuelling elements. Creating words out of play-dough, crisps, rice or shaving foam allows children to completely own their experience of the words. It is through choosing the colours, the shape, the patterns, that children completely own the experience, their creation.
They are literally creating the words through the way they see and understand them.
According to the Finnish research, the feeling of ownership, of creating something is the key – not performance.
Talking while they create offers a way to monitor and evaluate their learning. Immersing yourself in an artistic task fully involves you on all levels. You have a finished result. Something beautiful you are proud of.
That’s why children remember the words they make when they make them in a creative, joyful way.