Institute for Christian Teaching

Education Department of Seventh-day Adventists




















Glenn Spring


Department of Music

Walla Walla College

College Place, Washington, USA



Prepared for the

22nd Faith and Learning Seminar

held at

Seminar Schloss Bogenhofen

St. Peter am Hart, Austria

August 9-21, 1998







342-98 Institute for Christian Teaching

12501 Old Columbia Pike

Silver Spring, MD 20904 USA




Tell me, and I'll forget.

Show me, and I may remember.

Involve me, and I will understand.

Chinese Proverb



1. Prelude

Recently I stumbled onto one of my test papers form the time of my long ago last fling at graduate school.  What a shock: but for my own handwriting, I couldn't recognize what I was reading?  I remembered the topic as interesting,[1] and the professor as a stimulating lecturer.  But here before my very eyes was proof positive that the teaching/learning experience had been a flop: I remembered nothing.  The topics and details alike appeared to me as new.

Immediately a related observation began to crystallize in my mind: the students who seem to get the most out of my classes are not necessarily the "top" students.  Often they end up with a "B": for the term (maybe even a "C" occasionally, in a arcane class like counterpoint).  But they somehow gain insight, whereas some of the other students--while garnering "A" evaluations--finish with a superficial (one suspects, short-term) knowledge.[2]

This observation/idea had been percolating at the back of my mind through much of my thirty-odd years of teaching.  Gradually, as this observation intermittently boiled up into consciousness, I began to formulate a hypothesis: successful teaching consists of establishing a dynamic relationship between the student and the subject matter.  That seemed to have the "ring of truth" to it.  But what is the nature of this "dynamic relationship," and how can the teacher foster it?  My intent in this paper is to search for answers to these questions.

2. Creative Experience: the God-like Activity

Our creative capacity is the prime manner in which we are made in God's image, contend many artists, theologians and other thinkers. Dorothy Sayers, the English writer, succinctly summarized the evidence for this belief from the Genesis account of creation: "Looking at man, (the author of Genesis) sees in him something essentially divine, but when we turn back to see what he says about the original upon which the 'image' of God was modeled, we find only the single assertion, 'God created.'  The characteristic common to God and man is apparently that: the desire and the ability to make things."[3]

It should not be surprising that many artists hold this belief in some form.  The year before he died,[4] Johannes Brahms had an extended conversation on the subject with his friend, the famous violinist, Joseph Joachim, and Arthur Abell, a young American music correspondent living in Europe at the time.  Here is an excerpt of Brahms' part of the conversation, in English translation.

Now Jesus taught us that God is Spirit, and He also said, "I and my Father are one.'  (John 10:30)  To realize that we are one with the Creator, as Beethoven did, is a wonderful and awe-inspiring experience….I always contemplate all this before commencing to compose.  This is the first step. When I feel the urge I begin by appealing directly to my Maker and I first ask Him the three most important questions pertaining to our life here in this world--whence, wherefore, whither [woher, warum, wohin]


I immediately feel vibrations that thrill my whole being.  These are the Spirit illuminating the soul power within, and in this exalted state, I see clearly what is obscure in my ordinary moods; then I feel capable of drawing inspiration from above, as Beethoven did.  Above all, I realize at such moments the tremendous significance of Jesus' supreme revelation, 'I and my Father are one.'[5]


The American writer Madeleine L'Engle says that

To paint a picture or to write a story or to compose a song is an incarnational activity.   The artist is a servant who is willing to be a birthgiver.  In a very real sense the artist (male or female) should be like Mary who, when the angel told her that she was to bear the Messiah, was obedient to the command….But the obedient response is not necessarily a conscious one, and not everyone ahs the humble, courageous obedience of Mary.[6]


There is much food for thought here.  One thing especially jumps out at me: L'Engle is, in essence, calling the fact of Mary's obedience a creative act, on a level with painting a picture, writing a story, etc.[7] And this throws the matter into the realm of the everyday, not just the realm of high art.  It is relatively easy for me to perceive my own artistic creation[8] as an in-the-image-of-God experience.  But I am becoming increasingly aware that preparing a meal or mowing the lawn or teaching a class can also be a creative act--and, yes, an act of obedience.  Moreover, these every day things ideally should be creative acts, if creativity is indeed the essence of our God-like-ness.

Assuming the assertions of sections 1 and 2 to be true, let us examine some aspects of the creative experience.

3. Characteristics of Creative Activity

Psychologists define creativity as divergent thinking.  This may be a useful definition for purposes of research, but few artists would recognize it as a description of what they do and experience.  Creativity involves the whole person in a unique way; we shall attempt to flesh out some of the characteristics.

A simple dictionary definition of create is "to bring into being," in other words, to make something: a model airplane from a kit; a casserole, using a recipe; a plywood boat from blueprints drawn by a naval architect.  But there is an ingredient missing here: originality.  If the model maker carves the airplane free-hand from a piece of wood, or if the cook experiments with new ingredients, or if the boat builder draws her own plan, the activity in each case moves in our minds from craft toward creation.[9]

The creative experience is also characterized by unselfconsciousness.  The artist or scientist loses himself in his work, the way that a child loses herself in play.  This seems to be a necessary ingredient for being obedient to the work, as L'Engle puts it.

A mental state blessed by unselfconsciousness allows for spontaneity, a condition virtually all writers on the subject seem to agree on, to varying degrees.

Frequently the creative worker experiences first neither this sheer readiness for the new nor that vague presentiment of some novel development felt to be specific but as yet undefined.  The invention may appear spontaneously and without apparent preliminaries, sometimes in the form of a mere glimpse serving as a clue, or like a germ to be developed; sometimes a fragment of the whole, whether rudimentary and requiring to be worked into shape or already in its final form; sometimes essentially complete, though needing expansion, verification, or the like.[10]


Being unselfconscious and susceptible to spontaneity also allows one to be open to the characteristics of the material or the problem at hand; to new possibilities.  William Stafford says that the artist is "someone who lets the material talk back."[11] So we might say that a fourth ingredient in the creative process is responsiveness to the material.

In addition, the human creator must be open to novelty.  This is perhaps related to responsiveness to material, but goes a bit further.  A wood carver will be sensitive to the grain, texture, hardness, etc. of the piece in hand, and may even conceive a new form by responding to it's unique properties. But openness to the new goes beyond, being an openness to possibilities, no matter how new, untried, or seemingly farfetched they may be.  This quality of being undaunted by the unorthodox opens the creator to the possibility of achieving new ideas, new syntheses, new forms of expression.

Artists of all sorts seem to agree that solitude is a necessary condition for creative work.  While this is undoubtedly true for the poet, the composer, the sculptor on the one hand, we also witness individuals who manage to function creatively in socially involved situations:

·       The think-tank scientist who achieves a break-through insight in the midst of a group discussion;

·       The bystander at an accident who senses a crucial need and grasps a solution;

·       The grade-school teacher who, sensing dynamic changes in his classroom, shifts into a new, unplanned activity.


The reason the artist needs solitude is for concentration.  The individuals in the above scenarios achieve a similar level of concentration within a social context, making creative response possible.  So we might say that while solitude is desirable (absolutely essential for some individuals in some fields), concentration to the exclusion of all distractions is an essential sixth characteristic of the creative process.

A seventh characteristic is preparation.  To bring the creative conception to realization, the maker must have developed his technical skills.[12]  Brahms made this clear when he spoke about Mozart's compositional experience:

[Mozart] was once asked what the process was with him while composing and he replied: "Es geht bei mir zu wie in einem schonen, starken Traume' [The process with me is like a vivid dream].  He then went on and described how ideas, clothed in the proper musical setting, streamed down upon him just as they do with me.  Of course, a composer must have mastered the technic of composition, form, theory, harmony, counterpoint, instrumentation--but any musical person can do that if he has the proper application.[13]  [Emphasis mine]


Perhaps preparation should top the list, because it is really a precondition more than a characteristic of the creative process itself.  Nonetheless, it is an essential, and we shall include it in our list.

Readers may perceive variations of, and interrelations among these characteristics of the creative experience, but these seven should suffice for purposed of our discussion:

1.      Originality

2.      Unselfconsciousness

3.      Spontaneity

4.      Responsiveness to materials

5.      Openness to novelty

6.      Concentration

7.      Preparation

4. The Role of Creativity in Teaching and Learning

In section 1 we observed that successful teaching consists of establishing a dynamic relationship between the student and the subject matter.  Let's revisit that hypothesis in the light of the current discussion.

To restate it from the viewpoint of the learner, we could say that successful learning takes place when the learning process itself becomes  (or involves) a creative act.  Observationally, I would asset that this is true.[14]  For over three decades I have observed students who have experienced this kind of learning.  Both short- and long-term observation bear out the value of such learning to the individual in terms of both immediate 'take-home knowledge' and subsequent, ongoing learning and attitudes.  Further, I have observed inspired teachers for whom the practice of teaching is itself a creative act, with marked results on the part of the students.

If we postulate that both teaching and learning can be either mechanistic or creative, 4 combinations are possible, as shown in the following table.



Mechanistic = left brain, mastery-of-facts approach/response

Creative = involving the characteristics of the creative process













The first pairing in the above chart is obvious: when the teaching approach is mechanistic, the leaning style is likely to be also.  But even under these conditions a student may at times 'catch fire,' achieving a creative learning experience in spite of the teacher's mechanistic approach. Conversely, a creative approach on the part of the teacher does not assure a creative response from the student.  Finally, both the teaching approach and the learning response may be creative experiences.

The last scenario--creative teaching, creative response--would be the ideal, but seems to be difficult to achieve with any degree of consistency.  Section 5 will consider strategies for creative teaching; section 6 relates an approach that has met with some success in putting the creative/creative approach into practice, and postulates models for further experimentation.

5. Strategies for Creative Teaching

Creativity cannot be forced; the best one can hope for is to create conditions favorable to the creative experience.  Going back to our list of characteristics from Section 3, we can consider some possibilities of creating a climate in which creative learning is likely to take place.  Much of the approach must be indirect, as we shall see.

1. True originality is probably impossible to achieve by a conscious act of will.  In fact, consciously attempting to be original seems to be a sure way not to be.[15]  But if we take originality to mean new to the participant--be it teacher or student--then the originality test could apply even to experiences involving rather elementary levels of knowledge.

A lack of inhibition about considering the new is essential here.  In addition to possessing this openness himself, the teacher must cultivate an atmosphere that values the untried, eschewing a judgmental stance in dealing with the searching mind of the student.

2. Unselfconsciousness.  L'Engle has said that a "child playing a game, building a sand castle, painting a picture, is completely in what he is doing.  His self-consciousness is gone; his consciousness is wholly focused outside himself."[16]  It is a truism in the dramatic profession that to be successful, and actor must be willing to make a fool of himself.  The teacher must not only cultivate this freedom from self-consciousness himself, but seek ways to help the students achieve it also.  Several of the other 7 characteristics we are considering are directly dependent upon this unselfconsciousness, most especially.

3. Spontaneity, which is defined as "proceeding from natural feeling or native tendency without external constraint; arising from a momentary impulse; controlled and directed internally."[17]  In order to be spontaneous, the teacher must be sensitive to the unique unfolding of each class hour, of each student encounter.  Only then can she hope to foster in turn spontaneity in her students …and along with spontaneity and unselfconsciousness.

4. Responsiveness to the materials.  Here we should expand the idea of materials to include not only the physical materials of the visual artist, but also the intellectual materials of the classroom: the content of the subject at hand, the conceptual relationship of that content to the wider body of knowledge, the students' evolving understanding.

5. Openness to novelty for us as teachers means valuing the new, the untried possibilities, the previously-un-thought-of relationships.  The student needs to know he/she will be valued, not belittled, for his/her off-the-wall hypotheses.  A "there are no bad questions" atmosphere must prevail.

6. Concentration is a given.  Any good teacher knows that if his own concentration lags, he will have lost his students' attention in short order.  But for some time I have had a growing conviction that concentration is one of the most undervalued and underdeveloped human commodities.  If we want to be creative teachers we must cultivate--both in and out of the classroom--the concentration to the exclusion of all distractions that is the province of the child at play and the artist at work.

The implications for teachers are far reaching, since virtually every aspect of the classroom--from the quality of our presentation, to the physical classroom setup, to how we perceive the constantly fluctuating social dynamics--has potential for engaging or distracting the students' concentration.

7. Preparation is another given, so much so as to need little comment.  The necessity for the teacher's preparation is obvious, but the preparation the student brings to the learning experience is also paramount.  Many a class has been derailed when one or more of the students lack the background for the study at hand.

The perceptive reader may already have noticed redundancies and overlaps in abundance.  Applications four seven chosen characteristics to teaching are so intertwined that at some points it is difficult even to talk about them individually.  Creativity is a uniquely unified experience, and the difficulty we have in analyzing it mirrors the difficulty of achieving it as teachers.  Perhaps it would be helpful to summarize our discussion in terms of goals for creative teaching.

The teacher must be:


Focused (concentration)

Unselfconscious and spontaneous

Must relate dynamically to the class: open to new ideas and to the continual unfolding of the subject and the students' changing, growing perception of and relationship to it (responsive to materials).

Must develop a--for lack of a better term--personal teaching style uniquely his/her own (originality).

6. Applications

The above description is a tall order for any teacher.  Yet all of us have on occasion encountered teachers who somehow manage to achieve this kind of teaching profile, an the success that goes with it.  How can we learn from them? Theoretically we should be able to gain some insights through observing them.  But it is not so easy for a peer to engage in the kind of extended observation and involvement necessary to really penetrate a creative teacher's unique synthesis of knowledge and approach.  Such an observer would need to have the experienced teacher's knowledge and background, but become again a full-pledge student to experience what a given teacher has to offer 'from the inside out.'

This seems an impracticable approach.  But perhaps there may be something to gain from an examination of existing teaching models.  With some personal trepidation, I offer the following description as a point of departure.

A. A Case History

As an idealistic young teacher in the mid-1960s, I had visions of landmark breakthroughs in the teaching of music theory.  It seemed--and still seems--that students come to this study already "knowing" much of the subject, since they have usually heard and participated in music since birth.  The "knowing" is largely intuitive, and the teacher should be able (I thought) to make an efficient connection between this store of intuitive understanding on the part of the young musician and the terminology, structures, and procedures of traditional harmony.  The process would be painless, and the usual two-year college/university study of harmony would be compressed into one joyous, insightful year.

Alas, no such miracle has come to pass.  But in the pursuit of that elusive goal, my teaching of theory has at least evolved into something that could reasonably be called successful creative teaching.  The following is an attempt to describe the approach that has evolved and is in regular use in a second-year music course.

Music Theory II[18]

Academic goal: to teach a conceptual and working knowledge of tonal harmony.[19] Philosophical goal: to seek insights into music as a personal human experience.  Procedural goal: to structure the class so as to lead the students to discover

Phenomena/structures/techniques for themselves, from the music itself, rather than from descriptions of such items.

In pursuit of these goals, we adopt an informal classroom atmosphere marked by trust and respect.  Specifics are as follows:

Class Materials


No textbook is used.  Students buy a personal copy of software for ear training, as well as sight singing book (musical material for sight singing practice). Musical excerpts from standard music literature (scores and recordings form the Walla Walla College Music Department library) are used for study.  As the year progresses, student compositions also become an important source for study.

Class Structure and Procedure

The main aspects of the study of music theory--learning new concepts, structures, and procedures, together with hearing and writing those same items--are presented in an integrated fashion.  Each class period (or group of contiguous class periods) has as its goal the learning of a 'new' item.  The approach to that goal may take numerous forms,[20] but since it is music we are studying, we always start from the specific sound of the item to be learned.  For example: we may first hear a recording or performance of music that uses the new item prominently; then examine the score for the pertinent technical details; then create a new setting of our own, using the new item.  The 'presentation' always takes the form of a discussion, group activity, or hands-on individual project, rather than lecture,[21] the goal being to help the students discover things themselves.

Music theory textbook assignments often take the form of repetitive writing of the item being studied.  For example, when studying the Italian sixth chord, the student might receive an assignment which reads;  "Write and resolve   Italian sixth chords in the flowing keys: f # minor; d minor; a minor; B-flat major.  Resolve the first 2 to tonic 6/4, the second 2 to V."  This assignment would assure that students figure out how to spell and resolve this particular chord properly, but may fail to engage the student's interest.

Our assignment on the same subject might read: "Write a 2-phrase musical period which includes an Italian 6th in each phrase.  Resolve one of your It.  6th's to tonic 6/4, the other to the dominant.  Use the key of your choice."  As with the textbook assignment, the student must learn to understand the details before proceeding.  But here the student has the opportunity to respond creatively, increasing the likelihood that meaningful comprehension will occur, and long-term memory will be engaged.


This approach fosters creativity on both sides of the teaching/learning matrix. Since the academic goal at any given point is concept oriented, rather than lecture/assignment specific, the teacher may be flexible in his presentation, moving freely form analysis to audible examples to "collective composition" at the blackboard as he senses the attempts of the student to comprehend and engage the new item. A lively interplay of the first six items on our list[22] can take place on the spot, and fresh approaches often erupt.  The resulting atmosphere encourages class participation, and creative learning responses. Often result.


No scientific comparisons between this class and comparable classes taught in a more traditional fashion have been made.  However, class evaluations and anecdotal evidence support the idea that creative learning is occurring.  Students from this class do well in subsequent theoretical work, and many have become interested in composing.  It is difficult to remember even a "low average' student who failed to 'light up,' at least occasionally, with the joy of fresh insight. Numerous veterans of this class who have gone on to graduate school have reported being much better prepared for their courses in theory than were their classmates.

Special considerations

It must be admitted that the subject matter of this class lends itself to a creative approach, perhaps more so than some other topics might.  Nonetheless, some aspects should be exportable to other situations.  (See subsections B and C.)

Small class size also favors this approach but this is more a product of school size than of any traditional factors.  Small class size is certainly desirable for the teaching of this subject, but large schools often teach comparable classes to 320 or more students--a challenge for the teacher, to be sure, but not, I would think, and a priori assurance that a creative approach such as described here could not be used in some form.[23]

Both preparation time and grading time may be greater when using this approach, at least at first.  There is a bonus, however: teaching this way is much more interesting and rewarding than lecturing and grading objective tests, so much so that the added interest fosters greater efficiency.  The creative process spills over into the preparation and grading areas of the teaching experience.

At first, grading seems a bit more difficult with this approach.  How can one objectively grade 2 (or 12!) disparate musical 2-phrase periods resulting from different students; creative approaches to the assignment given above (under Class Structure and Procedure)?  There is no single answer to that question. One probably can't be totally objective when forced to the inevitable comparisons. One can grade primarily on the specifics of the assignment, ignoring what is extraneous to those specifics, but this can result in the inferior of 2 pieces of music receiving the super grade-a frustrating situation, at best.

My own solution is to eschew numerical grades whenever possible.  It is a ridiculously simple fact that A really does means superior, C really does mean average, etc., and it is amazing how quickly students adjust to that realization, once it is explained, and administered fairly.  There are bonuses here, too.  Once adjusted to this procedure, students tend to quit quibbling about grades, and as a result, grades decrease in importance as motivators.[24]  This situation moves the classroom toward an atmosphere where creative teaching and learning can more easily take place.

B. A 'New' Class Imagined

I never have, and probably never will, teach music history.  But I could, and if I did, I'd like to try a different approach.  First a word about the subject itself, and about the traditional approach to teaching it. 

Like music theory, the study of music history is de rigueur for music majors.  Traditionally a lecture course, music history is jam-packed with data--from the dates and places of composers' births, and deaths, to the characteristics of various style periods, to the rise pf phenomena like opera, on and on--from antiquity to the present.  To be sure, there are respected, enthusiastic, even inspired and inspiring teachers of music history.  But on many campuses the course is reputed to be boring, despite the fact that it has scores and recordings to put it our in front of other forms of history in the popularity wars.[25]

How would I try to teach this course?  The first day I would play a diversity of recorded music from a broad spectrum of times and places, mentioning a few evocative/provocative tidbits of information in between.  The students would leave with a very broad, but not huge, listening list, charge with find something on the list that they liked, and the assignment of telling the class, in a few sentences, who wrote it, where and when, and why they liked it.

Soon the list would change, and the assignments would get a little longer and require more research, BUT--and these are the important things-10 the student would always choose a work based on the fact that she liked it and 2) the student would always share her findings about the composer and work AND her opinions about it with the rest of the class.

As the year progressed the lists would change, adjusting historical coverage here, adding a 'new' composer there, introducing a different style or genre or form another place.  My apparently-subtle, behind-the-scenes machinations would assure that, before the year was over, a broad picture of music history would emerge, the essential facts and chronology of the topic would have been covered, and each student would have accumulated an impressive sheaf of papers--his won, as well as everyone else's--in the process.

Would it work?  No one knows for sure.  Will someone try it?  I hope so.

C. Possibilities Unlimited

Obviously, the scenario in B. above was chosen from my general field, though not my specialty.  My lack of specific experience in teaching this particular class does not keep me from being reasonably sure that it would work, since I deal with topic daily on a professional level.

It is a bigger leap of faith to propose that similar or related approaches could be found for the teaching of chemistry, or engineering, or economics.  Observations on campuses lead me to believe, however, that these things are already happening, in classrooms where creative teachers reign.  Could it be because they are eminently prepared, concentrated on excellence, operating spontaneously in a mode of unselfconsciousness, responsive to the materials of their craft and their classroom, ready to welcome the new and achieve something original?

I think so.  And I look forward to hearing their case histories: our models for experimentation.


I truly believe the possibilities are unlimited.  If we could achieve a consistently high level of creativity in both our teaching and our learning experiences, we would not only improve education of a grand scale: we would also expand the teaching/learning experience into the realm of the spiritual, reflecting the image of God in the process. "Whatever line of investigation we pursue, with a sincere purpose to arrive at truth, we are brought in touch with the unseen, mighty Intelligence that is working in and through all.  The mind of man is brought into communion with the mind of God, the finite with the infinite.  The effect of such communion on body and mind and soul is beyond estimate."[26]


Abell, Arthur M.  Talks with Great Composers.  New York:  A Citadel Press Book, 1994.  Reissue of original from Philosophical Library, Inc., 1995.


Ghiselin, Brewster, ed.  The Creative Process: a Symposium.  The Regents of the University of California, 1952.


Hughes, Owen L.  "Created in the Image of God: a Christian View of Human Personality," Christ in the Classroom, Vol. 2, pp. 75-94.  Humberto M. Rasi, compiler.   Silver Spring, MD: Institute for Christian Teaching, 1991.


Jolliffe, Ronald L.  "Valuing Vision and Voice: aesthetics and Spirituality," Christ in the Classroom, Vol. 14, pp. 201-220.  Humberto M. Rasi, compiler.  Silver Spring, MD: Institute for Christian Teaching, 1994.


L'Engle, Madeleine.  A Circle of Quiet.  Farrar, Straus & Giroux, 1972.


_____. Walking on Water: Reflections on Faith and Art.  Wheaton, Illinois: Harold Shaw Publishers, 1980.


Sayers, Dorothy L.   The Mind of the Maker.   New York: Harcourt, Brace, 1941.


Stafford, William.  You Must Revise Your life.  Ann Arbor: The University of Michigan Press, 1986.


White, Ellen G.  Education.  Mountain View, California: Pacific Press Publishing Association, 1903.


[1]History of music theory, 20th century.

[2]Long-term, intermittent interactions with former students seem to confirm this observation.

[3]The Mind of the Maker, p. 22.

[4]1896; Brahms died in April, 1897.

[5]Arthur Ml Abell, Talks with Great Composers, p. 5.  Brahms goes on to explain that the composer must have mastered the technique of his craft in order for this creative experience to take place; see under section 3, below.

[6]Walking on Water, p. 18.

[7]I recognize this is taking L'Engle's simile in a direction she may not have intended, but I think she would approve.  She herself said: "over the years I have come to recognize that the work often knows more than I do."

[8]The writing of new musical works, since I am a composer.

[9]We will not involve ourselves here in philosophical/cultural notions of originality.  If the maker produces something new to himself, we will consider the test of originality to be met for our purposes. True originality, in contradistinction to work that is clearly derivative, is a more complex matter, and exceeds the scope of this paper.

[10]Brewster Ghiselin, The Creative Process, p. 15.

[11]William Stafford, You Must Revise Your Life, p. 21.

[12]This, of course, is an ongoing, lifelong process: we do not first arrive at technical perfection before being able to create.  But we can assume some level of mastery to be present as a precondition for the creative process at any give point in an individual's development.

[13]Abell, Talks with Great Composers, p. 6.

[14]This is not to argue that no learning ever takes place when creativity is not involved, since this is obviously not true.  Rather, we are asserting that creative involvement on the part of the student often results in insightful learning, and is more efficient than rote learning and other mechanistic approaches as well.

[15]For a good example we can look at some of the art and music of mid-twentieth century Europe and America, which consciously attempted to be totally new.  Viewed from the vantage point of the 1990's, much of this art appears derivative, revealing conformity rather than individuality.  Conscious attempts at originality violate the second characteristic we listed for the creative act: unselfconsciousness.

[16]A Circle of Quiet, p. 10.

[17]Webster's Ninth New Collegiate Dictionary, p. 1140.

[18]This class, or some similar class by another name, is a core course for music majors in American colleges, universities, and conservatories.

[19]Specifically, to develop analytical, written, and aural comprehension of chords, chord progressions, musical phrases, etc., in the style of the so-called common practice period, from about 1600 to 1900.

[20]Varying the approach to presenting new material is very important if we hope to foster ongoing creative responses.

[21]Lapses into lecture style are kept to an absolute minimum--usually resulting from a need for clarification on an old concept or technique, rather than for the presentation of new material--and then are kept brief and to the point, with a transition back to full class participation by all as soon as possible.

[22]Number 7, preparation, is a given.

[23]Regardless of topic, increases in class size will likely diminish the possibility of creative teaching as proposed in this paper. An extensive treatment of the subject, which has been researched and reported elsewhere, is beyond the scope of this paper.

[24]It is surprising how little there is to quibble about when the students realize no "points" are being accumulated.  True, the students still want to see those papers returned with A's on them, but they know the way to get tem is through doing their creative best, rather than by simply remembering facts more accurately.

[25]My daughter, an art major at a Midwestern American university, informs me that neither the beautiful art-slide presentation, nor her respect for the teacher, nor her own passionate interest in art, keeps her from nodding off in her art history class--apparently music history is not alone!

[26]Ellen G. White, Education, p. 14.