Lithuania invests in creative schools

National project receives 4.6 million euros

"In the begining of the project childern where saying that only an actor, a poet or artist can be creative. In the end of they were describinging creative person as attentive, planning to details, willing to learn, active manager, patient, brave, independent, communicative, active, wise, trying, imaginative.“ Curating teacher.

[Denne artikkelen på norsk]

Since 2011 Lithuania has invested greatly and nationally on creative partnerships. 4.6 million euro, 100 schools, more than 200 creative agents and a state funded project organisation puts the Baltic country in the lead for a practical aesthetic school.

- We want to create a school where teachers and pupils can develop their creativity. We are challenging the conventional, theory-focused teaching methods, project manager Milda Laužikaitė explains. Creative Partnerships in Lithuania is developed in collaboration with the British Creativity, Culture & Education (CCE) which was first to launch the creative partnerships in Britain in 2002.

- Creative Partnerships is about bringing professional creative agents into the schools. They might be artists, educators or other professionals engaged with unlocking children and young people's creativity. They collaborate closely with pupils and teachers, and together they develop projects and learning methods which contribute to important overall learning goals, including creativity.

European year for creativity and innovation

The great investment in Lithuania came after the Forum for a creative society in Vilnius in 2009, the European year for creativity and innovation. The initative came from the grassroots, teachers and other creative educators who wanted to do something with the school. Momentum came when important state institutions joined and gave whole hearted support to the project, funding included.

- So far it is a three year project finishing in 2014, but we do hope that this can be included as a natural part of the educational system in Lithuania, Laužikaitė says, she is continuously developing the project. Recently 42 new creative agents attended a course in order to prepare for working in Lithuania's schools and contribute to increased creativity.

Creative Partnerships throughout Europe

British CCE is also collaborating on creative partnerships in Germany, Latvia, The Czeck Republic and Norway, but no other country has such a vast investment as Lithuania. In Norway the City of Oslo and the Culture School in Ås being among the partners with respectively five and 20 schools involved in this coming academic year.

Creativity in the schools of Lithuania.

Creativity in the schools of Lithuania.

"The soundboard of Kražiai". The 7th-graders of Kražiai gimnasium were exploring the soundscape of there town. With a help of their practitioner Andrius Rugys, soundartist, they learned to listen and to hear, and to their own surprise, they discovered the values of silence.

Foto: Andrius Rugys