Susan Riley | August 2015

SparkChasers Podcast: Creating with GRIT

You were created to create. I heard this one Sunday afternoon and was immediately struck silent for a moment.  If this holds true, why do we spend so much time teaching mind-numbing skills and provide a laughable amount of opportunities to actually DO something with those skills?  Shouldn’t it be the other way around?  It’s one of the reasons why schools that invest their money into more arts classes (not less) actually see bigger gains in student achievement.  We are ALL created to create.

But still, people seem to need proof.  So in this episode of the SparkChasers podcast, we’re exploring the science connecting the act of creating and our minds, bodies, and emotions.  We’re also looking at the 5 characteristics of grit (as a part of Angela Duckworth’s work) and how they are actively engaged when we are focused on the ACT of creating.  This is an episode that truly goes to the heart of why we do what we do.


The Secrets of the Creative Brain article by Nancy Andreasen

The Creating Brain book by Nancy Andreasen

What would happen if every child had music education from birth? TedX Talk by Anita Collins

Grit and the Secret of Success as featured on Brain Pickings

The 5 Characteristics of Grit featured in Forbes Magazine

About the Author

Susan Riley is the founder and CEO of The Institute for Arts Integration and STEAM. She focuses on teacher professional development in arts integration, STEAM, 21st century learning skills, and technology. She is also a published author and frequent presenter at national conferences on Arts Integration and STEAM education. Susan holds a Bachelor of Music degree in Music Education from the prestigious Westminster Choir College in Princeton, NJ and a Master of Science in Education Administration from McDaniel College in Westminster, MD. She lives in Westminster, MD with her husband and daughter. Email Susan