The Creative Classroom Project was a collaboration between Project Zero and Disney Worldwide Outreach to produce materials that help teachers explore and understand:

  • The role of creativity and innovation in teaching and learning.
  • The importance of developing classroom and school environments that can bring out the best in teachers and students.
  • Methods for making classrooms more engaging places.

In the development of the materials, we drew on the expertise and experience of past American Teacher Award (ATA) Honorees to better understand their teaching practices and their own professional development as creative and innovative professionals. The Creative Classroom materials are not focused on the development of students' creativity per se, but on the development of environments in which students' and teachers' creativity, understanding, and thinking can flourish. Similarly, the focus is not on the fun and novelty of individual lessons but on nurturing a deep engagement in the learning process that requires students to invest and extend themselves.

In the project, we take the stance that creative teaching must build on a foundation of solid pedagogy. However, creative teaching is not merely a higher plateau of practice. Creative teaching requires a fundamental move out of a safe zone for the teacher. Therefore, creative teaching is not necessarily the next logical step beyond good teaching practices. We see creative teaching as more generative and responsive teaching rather than just more effective teaching. In the current climate of high-stakes testing and mandated curriculum, creative and innovating teaching is perhaps more important than ever as it keeps classrooms energetic places of learning.

The Creative Classroom Videotapes and Guides are frequently used in pre-service teacher training, graduate schools, and onsite professional development. These materials provide rich examples of what creative and innovative teaching can look like across subjects, grade, and school settings. These materials were distributed by Disney Worldwide Outreach and are in the public domain, with permission to copy and use the materials with appropriate attribution fully granted. Please contact Disney Worldwide Outreach directly at or via their website to inquire about these materials or to share with them how you have used them.

The Creative Classroom Project (1999-2004) was a collaboration between Project Zero and the Disney Worldwide Outreach to produce tools and knowledge that will inform and support creativity in teaching.

Project Info

Project Dates: 1999 - 2004
Funder: Disney Worldwide Outreach


Past Staff