“Original Thinkers” is a fascinating TED Talk by Adam Grant, author of Originals: How Non-Conformists Move the World. “The greatest originals are the ones who fail the most – because they are the ones who try the most,” according to Grant. Using the story of his own failure to invest in a new company that would later become incredibly successful, Adam Grant describes the misconceptions we have about original thinkers, how procrastination can lead to great ideas, and even how the web browsers we use can reveal the inherent creativity in our personalities.
I discovered “Original Thinkers” when I was browsing through the “TED Collections” section of the Mensa for Kids website. This page includes 21 links to TED Talk videos and excellent discussion questions and extensions for each one. I highly recommend you take a look at these fascinating options, as I am sure you will find something that will be of interest to you and your students. As always, preview the videos before showing them to your class. (“Original Thinkers” does have the word, “crap” in it – which may or may not be inappropriate for your particular audience.) . I will be adding this to my Inspirational Videos for Kids Pinterest Board, where you can also find many great video resources.
This site offers resources for teachers and parents, as well as games, activities, and contests for kids who like challenges. I like the “Living Poetically” challenge, as well as the “Excellence in Reading Award”. In the games section, there is a neat “Family Crossword” that is updated twice a week. It includes clues for kids and for adults, so families can participate together. The “Word Roundup” is a fun way to learn new trivia and vocabulary, and there are several math games as well. According to Mensa’s website, Mensa for Kids just won the 2011 APEX Grand Award in the category of Electronic & Video Publications (Nonprofit/Small Office subcategory). With its treasure trove of lesson plans and entertaining activities, I can certainly see why!