Week 1: Creating a common understanding of co-creation
We unpack the concept of co-creation, the process that maximizes the potential for creative breakthroughs. Using the classroom as a community of practice, we develop an intimate environment that serves as a container for creative partnership to handle the dive into the unknown. Creative achievement is relational and closely connected to philosophical paradigms of inquiry, such as “Ikigai” (the Japanese concept of reason for being) and social artistry. We also explore the intangibles of co-creation and apply this exploration to a range of relevant contexts.
Week 2: Initiating the co-creation process through collaborative problem formulation
We start with a process of collaborative problem identification and engage in collaborative problem-solving activities. We designate roles in order to create engagement and empowerment that emulates a group of citizens. We also introduce Art-Based Community Development (ABCD) for the following art-engaging activities where we offer students a means of accessing previously unvoiced perceptions or nebulous understandings and enable them to articulate these in divergent ways that resonate with others.
Week 3: Developing the art of engagement: the Poetry Gallery exercise
We start the Poetry Gallery exercise where we introduce students to ideas of tacit knowledge and learning. As they browse, select, and share poems, students may tap into personal material that they have not shared in other situations. These include values, relationships, future ambitions, crises, work experience, athletic or artistic skills, conflicts, and changes. As they share their responses with others, and free-write their own proto-poems, learning occurs at levels deeper than mere content generation.
Week 4: Working in a small group (2~3) to develop a proposal
We introduce a “bridging activity” for students to apply and develop their proposals in the concrete, local context of which practical implementation is an important element. Students are given the challenge of working together to design and facilitate one 20-min art-based presentation in Week 6. The multidimensional goals they are encouraged to consider include the content of the topic, skill practice, and engagement of peers, which furthers the development of the class as a learning community and personalizes the material.
Week 5: Managing the co-creation process
Addressing three issues: (1) diagnosing the community and what it needs, (2) making it personal, and (3) negotiating the role of the arts, the student groups work toward the production of a deliverable project. This promotes the sharing of experience and personal reflection on how co-creating works. Students are given methods and tools to work with between classes. In this way there is a close link between the learning process set in motion when students are attending the course and that initiated in their collaboration with fellow students and their respective communities.
Week 6: Dissemination and communication of the co-creation process
We invite students to present their projects in class. A rich network of intrinsic motivation is part of the co-creative experience. Students are motivated by social bonding, responsibility to the group, personal growth, and increased confidence in their presentation and facilitation abilities. Students borrow and adapt techniques such as role-playing, skits, stories, and the skillful use of classroom exercises from one another. In this sense, the culture of the class resembles the culture of a community of practice where members freely consult each other based on perceived expertise and interest.