Steve Jobs knew a thing or two about creativity, which in the workplace is one of the most highly valued skills to have. Parents should do everything in their power for their children learn to unleash their creativity. This includes guiding and empowering their child’s teachers to teach them creativity. But, how?
Parents can do a lot to encourage teachers to ‘teach more like Steve Jobs.’ He was, after all, a legendary businessman and entrepreneur that took creativity to a whole new level – and experienced incredible levels of success. Teachers can learn a lot from the legendary Apple co-founder – and parents can be there to help. Here’s how:
1. USE STORYTELLING
Steve Jobs was a master storyteller who used stories to connect emotionally with his audience. Unfortunately, many students have become numb to conventional classroom presentations, particularly where they’re confronted with Powerpoint slide after slide containing too much information in a very short time.
Encourage your child’s teacher to engage students by telling better stories. How? By revealing “how” something happened in addition to just the “what” or “why.” Visuals such as props, photos, or YouTube clips can help convey the story, as do other creative online tools like Prezi. Encourage your child to really listen to presentations, and to create an emotional connection to it. Ask him/her “how did that story make you feel?” After school, ask your child to tell or create a new story that reflects something interesting that happened in the school day using these online tools.
2. LOOK AT THE BIG PICTURE BUT DON’T FORGET THE DETAILS
Steve Jobs was notorious for presenting the big picture vision of his ideas without neglecting the fine details. Many teachers are good at one of these two things, but they can build a much better classroom presence by keeping both in balance. When your child gets home from school, ask him to pick a classroom discussion, and to highlight the interesting details of a topic, and then talk about how this relates to the main idea. Students will learn this by example: They will naturally observe how you keep the logical progression going from smaller supporting topics to the bigger picture and will naturally channel this experience when giving their own speech in front of an audience.
Read Related: Tips to Unleash Your Creativity
3. BE INTERACTIVE
Steve Jobs collaborated with colleagues and kept the discussion wide open. If you encourage teachers to allow your student to interact vocally and not be afraid to speak, they’ll create lively presentations that are based on collaboration. This will create a classroom experience that’s bilateral as opposed to unilateral, where information is flowing from teacher to student and vice versa, thus encouraging the creativity of the audience.
Encourage your student to speak in front of the classroom. Ask him/her to raise his/her hand at least once each week and present the teacher with a brand new idea, or a brand new way of looking at a problem. Students will learn not only the content of a presentation, but also the power of working and collaborating with others.
4. SHARE YOUR IDEAS
Because Steve Jobs wanted to maximize the impact of his presentations, he shared them with fans all over the world. A teacher’s presentations should be shareable, searchable and easy to download on the web through various tools that are available to them for free. Encourage your teachers to upload to their presentations, and your student to download, and perhaps have a fun chat at home about the presentation, where your child tells you what he/she enjoyed about it. Encourage your child to work virtually with schoolmates by using various online tools, like Prezi, to download and upload materials they can all work on remotely.
Just because we can’t all replicate Steve Jobs’ legendary on-stage charisma that doesn’t mean we can’t learn something important from his unique presentation skills.
Prezi is also proud to celebrate your own student’s creativity through their “Canvas My Campus” competition. The contest is global and calls for college students to create a presentation about why their University is “the bee’s knees.” The winners get a one week all-expense paid internship in San Francisco with Prezi and the entire University will get free pro licenses. Apply now!
ABOUT THE AUTHOR:
Amanda Richardson is Prezi’s head of product. Whether she is helping users browse great presentations at prezi.com or making Prezi’s desktop and mobile apps elegant and easy to use, she focuses on finding ways to inspire others to share their ideas and stories–including millions of teachers and students. Before joining Prezi, Amanda was the head of product and marketing for Snagajob, another mission-driven company. With degrees from UVA and Stanford, she brings a passion for creating beautiful products and experiences that users love.