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Creative Learning and Collaborative Composition

VANCOUVER, BRITISH COLUMBIA, CANADA – Nikola Tošic is an improvisational jazz musician who facilitates creative music making workshops to students of varying ages and musical experience and teaches music in a free afterschool program for children in an underserved community.

His initial connection with the JW Foundation was as a contributor to our Learning Journal with his piece entitled Loving the Game of Making Music.

After exploring his personal relationship to The Art of Learning principles, Tošic began to think about how he could further incorporate these concepts into his teaching. “The Art of Learning has had a major role in reshaping my approach to obstacles and adversities, unlearning, maintaining presence, and cultivating quality in life. It feels natural to share this information and these experiences with my students,” he explains.

Within his creative music making workshops, Tošic is using learning principles such as Value Process Before Results, Investment in Loss, Beginner’s Mind, Breaking Down Walls, Internal Solution, and Downward Spiral to help his students embrace the process of working collaboratively to create something new.

“I try to have open discussions on ‘what just happened’ in the workshops which allows the participants to share what they noticed during a creative exercise (like a social dynamic, a problem-solution, coincidences etc). The nature of collaborative composition is that there are always obstacles, which usually need to be overcome in a novel way. ”

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