Creative Problem Solving

"Creative Problem Solving is a proven method for approaching a problem or a challenge in an imaginative and innovative way. It's a process that helps you redefine the problems and opportunities you face, come up with new, innovative responses and solutions, and then take action." Learn more about the proof here.

There are many skill sets that foster excellence in creative problem-solving and they are directly connected to both mindfulness and social emotional learning. My approach draws from the following:

Design Thinking


Design thinking is a creative problem-solving process that uses elements from the designer's toolkit like empathy & experimentation to arrive at new solutions. There are 5 key skills and multiple levels of skillfulness with each.

  • Empathy

  • Define the Problem

  • Ideate (come up with lots of solution ideas)

  • Prototype (create a representation of your idea)

  • Test (share and get feedback from intended solution-user)

Arts Integration

"Arts Integration is an approach to teaching in which students construct and demonstrate understanding through an art form. Students engage in a creative process which connects an art form and another subject and meets evolving objectives." 

  • Drawing and/or depicting relationships

  • Sculpting, Building, Shaping

  • Aesthetics and Experience Architecture

  • Embodied Cognition 

  • Collage, Assemblage, Curation

  • Movement and Dance

  • Storytelling and Public Speaking

  • Creative Writing

  • Reflection and Documentation

Nonviolent Communication

"NVC guides us in reframing how we express ourselves and hear others. Instead of being habitual, automatic reactions, our words become conscious responses based firmly on an awareness of what we are perceiving, feeling, and wanting. We are led to express ourselves with honesty and clarity, while simultaneously paying others a respectful and empathic attention."


There are four components of NVC:

  1. observation

  2. feeling

  3. needs

  4. request

Collaborative and Proactive Solutions

"Collaborative & Proactive Solutions (CPS) is the non-punitive, non-adversarial, trauma-informed model of care Dr. Greene originated and describes in his various books, including The Explosive Child, Lost at School, Lost & Found, and Raising Human Beings."  

  1. Identify Lagging Skills

  2. Identify Unsolved Problems

  3. Connect with Empathy

  4. Share adult concerns

  5. Invite solutions of mutual agreement

  6. Experiment/ Track/ Revisit as needed

  7. Move on to the next unsolved problem

Sir Ken Robinson, world-renowned education and creativity expert

RSA ANIMATE: Changing Education Paradigms

Nonviolent Communication with Marshall Rosenberg - a Brief Introduction

Kids Do Well if They Can Ross Greene #1

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