Approximately 80 participants including members of the C-group:
Alan Maley, Malu Sciamarelli, Jane Spiro, Hania Kryszewska, Charlie Hadfield, Adrian Underhill, Andrew Wright, Nick Bilborough, Tessa Woodward.
1. Introduction to the aims of the C Group
Chaz introduced the key mission of the C Group and our working definition of ‘creativity’, including creativity as a catalyst for change and the urgency of a group such as this to keep creative approaches alive for teachers and learners in all settings.
2. Overview of activities
The following were mentioned and main participants talked about their own initiative: further follow-up developments have been noted since the meeting in April.
- Global Issues and C Group joint SIG event IATEFL 2016 (Margit Szesztay and Chaz Pugliese).
- Multiple C Group member events at IATEFL 2016 including Skyped live classroom link-up with children in Gaza in shared creative activities (Nick Bilborough). See flyer in the following link: http://thecreativitygroup.weebly.com/blog/c-group-presenters-at-iatefl-birmingham-2016
- C Group scholarship at IATEFL 2016 (Rokhatoy Boltaeva, Uzbekistan) and a second planned for IATEFL 2017.
- Scholarships for Pilgrims and NILE programmes in 2016.
- HLT Creativity special issue 2015 (Hania Kryszewska).
- Language and Creative Arts Symposium at Oxford Brookes May 2015 (Jane Spiro) with a planned follow-up HLT special issue August 2017.
- British Council edited collection on creativity (eds. Alan Maley & Nick Peachey) with a follow-up planned for 2017.
- Creativity regular slot in Teacher Trainer (Tessa Woodward) and HLT Mag (Hania Kryszewska).
- JALT speakers sponsored by Pilgrims and the C Group 2015 and 2016 (Jane Spiro and Sarah Mercer).
- Malta ELT conference. Oct. 2015. Organised by Daniel Xerri. Plenaries by Chaz Pugliese, Luke Meddings, Alan Maley.
- TESOL Greece. March 2016. Plenaries by Carol Read, Jeremy Harmer and Alan Maley.
- TESOL-Macedonia : Northern Greece. March 2016. Plenaries from Jamie Keddie and Hania Kryszewska.
- IATEFL Research SIG webinar June 8th : Research and Creativity in Language Teaching with Jane Spiro.
- NILE 21 Conference. 12-14 August. Speakers include Rod Bolitho and Jeremy Harmer. Special Creativity Thread.
- BAAL-IATEFL Research SIG joint event on ‘Reimagining Teaching’. 23 Sept. (Daniel Xerri and Sarah Mercer.)
- 9th ELTAM. Macedonia conference on creativity in Struga. (Aleksandra Popovski)
All C Group participants are invited to communicate events, workshops, publications, conferences of relevance to the C Group to Malu Sciamarelli (firstname.lastname@example.org) so these can be uploaded to the website and made known more widely.
- symposium in Hungary with C-group participants;
- plans from Brazil to create a creativity group;
- Third Spontaneity workshop: Birmingham. January 2017. (Nick Bilbrough, Adrian Underhill & Alan Maley).
- Csilla Jaray-Benn (Tesol France) talked about the possibility of a C-strand at the Paris colloquium in November. She was promoting the event at IATEFL.
3. C Group roles
- Current roles: Alan Maley (mission and vision), Chaz Pugliese, Amos Paran (IATEFL link), Jane Spiro (events planning), Malu Sciamarelli (website development, memberships), Adrian Tennant (link for IATEFL Conference, 2016), HLT Creativity pages (Hanna Kryszewska), Teacher Trainer creativity pages (Tessa Woodward)
- New roles within the C-group: the following roles were invited –
Planning for IATEFL Conference, 2017 and generating the C Group flyer: Nick Bilborough.
Sponsorship for the C group scholarship. (No takers yet)
ACTION More members are invited who are prepared to be proactive and develop initiatives on behalf of the C Group.
4. Future directions
The following were suggested directions:
- Creating links outside the TESOL profession, to creativity champions within psychology, education, first language: how, where, in what context, to whom?
- Researching learner response to creative activities: what happens, what do students think about this, how does it change them? With an aim to building up strong explanations, ‘evidence’, rationale for creativity to be built into all teaching contexts.
- Creativity in the curriculum: how do we embed creativity into teaching programmes at all levels - language teaching, BA, MA and teacher education – CELTA/DELTA: how can we influence this, what does it look like, how do we assess it? And sharing examples of good practice via our website.
- HLT Magazine Special issue on Language Teaching and the Creative Arts: agreed for August 2017 with Jane Spiro as editor, and comprising the outcomes of the IATEFL/Brookes/C Group symposium May 2015.
- C-strands in IATEFL colloquium in locations mentioned at the meeting: Brazil, Hungary, Macedonia, Paris.
- Research and creativity: connecting teachers to ask questions in their classrooms about how creativity works, what it means, how learners respond.
- Talking to policymakers
The following journals and organisations have offered to advertise and highlight C Group events:
Pilgrims (supports C Group presence at IATEFL and JALT)
ETAS (English Teachers Association Switzerland)
HLT Mag – a regular creativity slot
The Teacher Trainer – Creativity insert advertising events
Paris TESOL Colloquium on creativity
IATEFL Hungary colloquium – C Group speakers were highlighted with a small flower
ACTION C Group members to suggest further advertising opportunities through their organisations.
6. Status of C Group
An unresolved question is the status of the C Group: an IATEFL SIG group? (but this would exclude potential members who are not in IATEFL); a charitable group (but this would require elaborate administration to conform to charitable regulations), an independent organisation with a virtual presence based on optional donations according to means, such as iTDi; other options?
ACTION ‘Troika’ and C Group members to investigate these options further, and canvas opinions from active members.