Teach Creativity Through Deliberate Creative Problem Solving

Websites that will help you develop creativity through deliberate creative problem solving

We are assembling a list of national and international programs available the focus on creativity and problem solving for students.  If you would like to recommend an organization to the list, please contact us at creativityandeducation@gmail.com

  • Youth Entrepreneur Institute has a focus on entrepreneurship and problem-solving in grades K-12.  Based in Northeast Ohio, this program has recently expanded around the world.

  • Invention Convention is a global invention education program.  It teaches students problem-solving, creative thinking, and entrepreneurship to build creative confidence through invention.  At the center of this program is what they refer to as STEMIE learning, which recognizes the foundational skills of Science, Technology, Engineering, and Math in combination with Invention and Entrepreneurship learning.

  • Odyssey of the Mind (OM) is an international creative problem-solving program developed over the last 40 years. Schools join the program and form teams coached by an adult. Team members work together to solve a predefined challenge and present their solutions to the challenge at a competition. OM offers a broad range of problems and encourages students to both develop solutions and create novel ways of presenting their ideas (Why Odyssey of the Mind, 2018).

  • Destination Imagination is similar to the OM program. In fact, the organization sprang out of the OM company in order to pursue a not-for-profit model. Destination Imagination offers a range of challenges and a series of annual competitions. This program aims to teach a deliberate creative problem-solving process that students apply to a range of predefined questions. Each team works with the assistance of an adult coach (Destination Imagination—Mission & Vision, 2018).

  • The National Inventors Hall of Fame offers a variety of programs for children of all ages that include problem-solving, inventing, prototyping, and hands-on STEM challenges.  These programs are led throughout the United States by local certified educators.  

  • For Inspiration and Recognition of Science and Technology (FIRST) robotics competitions, as the name suggests, focus on STEM-based challenges. The FIRST organization offers four separate strands, ranging from relatively simple LEGO® robotic challenges for younger children to sophisticated activities aimed at high school students and beyond. The challenges address real-world engineering problems and mentors with engineering experience lead them (First Inspires—Home, 2018).

  • Future City is a project-based learning program aimed at students from 6th to 8th grade. Projects are responses to the powerful question, “How can we make the world a better place?” From this starting point, the children are asked to imagine, research, design, and build cities of the future. Student teams produce five deliverables each that showcase their solution in different ways and at various levels of development. These projects are displayed at regional competitions and a subset are presented at the national finals in Washington, DC, USA (What is Future City, 2018).