Group effort can promote innovation

Grace Knotts, Editor in chief

Two new books tout collaboration.
Steven Sloman and Philip Fernbach’s “The Knowledge Illusion” notes that groups access a pool of knowledge, thereby sharing the mental workload. Agustin Fuentes’ “The Creative Spark” posits that collaboration promotes individual and community growth—even when we disagree.
Can we achieve such here? We actually have, STAT teacher Kim Culbertson said. She cited engineering teacher Wanda Brown’s students, who worked jointly to design a chariot for a child with cerebral palsy this year, and sophomore Hannah Snoops, whose hats-for-homeless project won Genius Hour last year. For each, Culbertson said, creative brainstorming fueled innovation.
Publications here thrive on collaboration. Ask Sequel Magazine adviser Meekah Hopkins, who said Advanced Creative Writing students often collaborate either to enhance individual works or to devise a single unique creation.
Collaboration powers the Griffin too. This story, for example, is the work of multiple writers and began on a whim with a suggestion from our adviser. Graphics guru Tirzah Khan routinely mulls over ideas from our wordsmiths before forming optimal graphic designs.
Groups can and should work in classes. The key? Unified effort and motivation toward a clear goal.
Hear that, teachers and students?