Roger von Oech

Creative Think

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Rodger, I deal with quite a few "older people" in regards to technology issues and this the the main piece of advice I give them when they are stuggling with technical problem. The fact the the "fear" of messing up in regards to interacting with software was one of my primary reasons for starting my Unraveling to Understand site. My wife also deals with the same issues with some most of her adult students as she is a private music teacher.

I'm 40 years old but I love to "play" or rather "experiment" with new things. When I was talking about "older people" I don't always mean that everyone who is over a certain chronological age is "old" but rather it can be a state of mind that can begin not long after traditional childhood.

I love interacting with people of any age who is willing to play in order to learn but as soon as I catch the slightest hint of a fear or someone saying, "I could never do that." I know I'm in for an uphill battle.

Roger von Oech

Patrick: Wonderful post! I found a similar thing when I introduced the "Ball of Whacks" a few months ago. People over 40 or so seemed more reluctant to pick it up and start playing with it and making various shapes. Also, some were concerned that it might "break" or they would be unable to put the pieces back into ball form. I noticed that younger people had fewer qualms about just picking it and playing wit it.

Gavin Heaton

One of the wonderful things about the ball of whacks is that it explodes. You think you are gently squeezing and playing with it when suddenly, bam!

It is brilliant. Embarrassing. Unexpected. And makes you lose all inhibitions that you may have about playing with it.

I like "think like a kid" ... but I also like "see through a child's eyes". Get down on their level and see how big the world looks. It really is "eye opening".

Roger von Oech

Gavin: Looks like you're having fun "thinking like a kid" with your Twitter avatars. You've got a new one every day.

With respect to the Ball of Whacks: when some people play with it for the first time in its full ball form, they think it's like a Rubik's Cube and squeeze it hard — with the results you describe. I usually tell people to be gentle at first so that they get a sense of how strong the magnets are.

Phillip Marzella

There is a great quote that says creativity is present in all children until educations pushes it out of them...perhaps we should unlearn...

Hussein Nasser

Really nice post.

Kids have an unlimited imagination.

Kids think out of the box because they don't have one to think "in"

Kids imagine.

Kids are optimistic.

I wrote something similar,

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