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Dr. Jim DiSanza

Leading Creative Teams

Are teams more creative than individuals? This learning module debunks the myths of creativity and reviews a variety of brainstorming­type techniques for small groups. The class is then divided into groups and each performs an idea generation exercise using a different brainstorming technique. The results of each group’s exercise are compared and contrasted. The session closes by explaining that any group can improve its creativity by using brainstorming techniques.

Risk Communication

Risk communication is any communication about uncertain physical and environmental hazards. Students begin this learning module by working in groups to rank order the causes of preventable death in the United States. Generally, students have a pretty good, intuitive understanding of the things that are most likely, and least likely, to cause preventable death. We then discuss psychological factors that tend to increase or decrease people's perceptions of risk. Finally, we examine communication techniques that work to increase or decrease people's concerns about various hazards.

State Standards

These presentations meet the following state education standards for high school students:

English Language Arts/Literacy

Text Types and Purposes

W.11-12.2 Write informative/explanatory texts to examine and convey complex ideas, concepts, and information clearly and accurately through the effective selection, organization, and analysis of content.


Production and Distribution of Writing

W.11-12.4 Produce clear and coherent writing in which the development, organization, and style are appropriate to task, purpose, and audience.


Comprehension and Collaboration   

SL.11-12.1 Initiate and participate effectively in a range of collaborative discussions (one-on-one, in groups, and teacher-led) with diverse partners on grades 11-12 topics, texts, and issues, building on others’ ideas and expressing their own clearly and persuasively.

Presentation of Knowledge and Ideas

SL.11-12.4 Adapt speech to a variety of contexts and tasks, demonstrating a command of formal English when indicated or appropriate.