Professional development in our school ABHSS (Ahmed Bin Hanbal Independent Secondary School for Boys) in 2014 started with a workshop on “Brainstorming”. I was keen on getting the trainees involved in various discussions and activities to elicit all possible information about brainstorming and how it can be utilized in generating creative ideas in the classroom. The following is a summary of the points discussed throughout the session:
- Define the concept of brainstorming
- Clarify the objectives of brainstorming
- Clarify the benefits and advantages of brainstorming
- Identify areas of utilizing and using brainstorming in our daily lives
- The conditions of the success of brainstorming
- Illustrate the stages of brainstorming and the content of each stage
The concept of brainstorming
It is a strategy to generate ideas or to get the maximum amount of ideas, focusing on quantity rather than on quality, through the flow of free ideas, thoughts and opinions.
It is putting the largest possible number of options before making a decision, or several solutions before adopting a particular one.
Not being convinced with the first idea, opinion or solution; there are always multiple solutions and ideas.
What happens in brainstorming sessions?
Each person is asked to put forward a number of ideas to solve the problem at hand or the subject of the debate – after accurately being identified – without being interrupted by any person.
Writing down all these ideas, eliminating the redundant ones, and integrating convergent ideas, until – at the end – a number of specified ideas is arrived at. Finally a decision is made to choose the best idea, opinion or solution.
The objectives of brainstorming
- Solving problems creatively
- Finding new ideas and projects
- Supporting and stimulating thinking and creativity among trainees
The benefits and advantages of brainstorming
- Flexibility in thinking and accepting innovation and development
- Getting used to respecting the opinions of others
- Innovation and creativity in generating ideas
- Careful thinking before making a decision
- A stimulating way for effective participation
- Investing time efficiently and effectively
- Generating the maximum amount of options, alternatives, ideas, information, questions and solutions
Areas of utilizing and using brainstorming in our daily lives
- Facilitating studying and revision
- Solving Problems
- Understanding events, attitudes and ideas
- Meetings and discussions
- In learning and awareness raising
- In the search for innovative and creative solutions
Stages of brainstorming
This method can be used in the second stage of the creative process, which consists of three basic stages:
- Identify the problem (identifying the topic, problem, issue, goal)
- Find or generate ideas, (stimulus)
- Find a solution (responses, reactions and treatment)
Basic rules for the brainstorming session
- The need to avoid criticism of the ideas generated during the brainstorming session
- Freedom of thought and acceptance of all ideas no matter what their quality is
- Emphasis on increasing the amount of the ideas generated
- Deepening and developing other people’s ideas
You can download the presentation used here.