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The Wonder Wall

Leading Creative Schools and Organizations in an Age of Complexity
By: Peter Gamwell, Jane Daly

Foreword by Sir Ken Robinson

Sometimes our attempts to foster creativity can stifle it. The Wonder Wall offers a fresh perspective on how to nurture creativity, innovation, leadership, and engagement.

Full description

Product Details
  • Grade Level: PreK-12
  • ISBN: 9781506357379
  • Published By: Corwin
  • Year: 2017
  • Page Count: 192
  • Publication date: June 01, 2017

Price: $30.95



Learn the four conditions most effective for fostering creativity

Sometimes our attempts to foster creativity can actually stifle it. Author Peter Gamwell, a former teacher and superintendent who has spent more than three decades studying creativity, shares a fresh perspective on how to nurture creativity, innovation, leadership, and engagement in a variety of settings.

You’ll learn how to:

  • Tap the creative and leadership potential in everyone
  • Think bigger by moving from a deficit model of thinking to a strength-based approach
  • Develop the lost arts of listening and storytelling to optimize learning
  • Handle the inevitable pushback and fear that transformational change can bring

Read Peter's blog post, What's Your Wonder Wall?

Watch The Wonder Wall video

Get The Wonder Wall poster

“I love this book. I am a huge fan of storytelling, and this book is one great story blended with cutting-edge academic work in the field of human mind and creativity. In The Wonder Wall Peter Gamwell and Jane Daly bring together decades of firsthand experience in creativity, leadership and learning into this volume that I indeed will, as the authors suggest, read twice. I would urge you to do the same if you want to be in the frontline of finding ways to improve your schools.”
—Pasi Sahlberg, Author
Finnish Lessons 2.0: What Can the World Learn from Educational Change in Finland, Helsinki, Finland

“Take everything you know about learning and turn it upside down. It is there that you will find Peter Gamwell, Jane Daly and their Wonder Wall of creativity wallowing in wisdom. Yes, we have three imperatives, and four conditions, and therein you will find a treasure trove of ideas for creativity. You don’t have to leave the school system to upend it. Just read Wonder Wall and you will be swept along into doing things that engage all students and teachers. You will even get ideas about how to evaluate creativity. The timing is perfect. Go beyond skills and knowledge, light the sparks that lead to learning. Be excited about the limitless possibilities of education."
—Michael Fullan, Professor Emeritus
OISE, University of Toronto, Toronto, Canada

"Be brilliant at what you're best at. Build on your strengths. Belong to something. These are the three imperatives that this great book sets out for young people and those who teach them. It does so with wit, wisdom, up-close experience and a magnificent capacity to tell a good tale of why all people in schools really matter. This book is its own Wonder Wall. When you've closed your Ken Robinson book, open this next. You'll not be disappointed."
—Andy Hargreaves, Brennan Chair in Education
Boston College, Chestnut Hill, MA



Peter Gamwell photo

Peter Gamwell

Born in Liverpool, England, Peter is the co-author, with Jane Daly, of The Wonder Wall: Leading Creative Schools and Organizations in an Age of Complexity, 2017, Corwin, foreword by Sir Ken Robinson; and Thinker, Learner, Dreamer, Doer: Innovative Pedagogies for Cultivating Every Student’s Potential, April, 2022, Corwin, fore­word by Yong Zhao.

An insightful, entertaining, and knowledgeable speaker, presenter, and consultant, Peter brings decades of academic research, experience, and insightful knowledge, gleaned from his award-winning career as a teacher and administrator at all levels of the education system. Through his presentations, workshops, books, YouTube channel, and website, he explores learning, leadership, and innovation and their impact on individual and organizational health and culture. Peter has worked across Canada and throughout many parts of the world, showing students, educators, administrators, schools, districts, com­panies, and policy makers how to foster that vibrancy in their own organizations.

Through the course of his work and research, Peter has captured the voices of hundreds of students and adults alike, video clips that provide unique and insightful glimpses into the lived world of our classrooms, schools, and organizations. These clips also provide criti­cal insight as to how we might imagine our learning cultures in a way that reawakens the brilliance that lies in all of us, with a central focus on individual, group, and organizational well-being.

An adjunct professor with the University of Ottawa, Peter has been the recipient of many awards throughout his forty-year career. In 2013, he was awarded the Distinguished Leadership Award by the Ontario Public Supervisory Officers’ Association for the work he led in Learning, Leadership and Creativity with the Ottawa-Carleton District School Board. In 2015, he was awarded the Global Distinguished Leadership Award by the Alberta Teachers’ Association.

In 2020, he cofounded the Canadian Network for Imagination and Creativity, @CNIC, which holds monthly IdeaJams on a wide range of topics—and which evoke lots of lively interactive conversation.

Jane Daly photo

Jane Daly

Although Jane’s career took her into the marketing and communications world, she was always fascinated by the field of education and the seeds of potential in every individual—especially when one of her own sons had difficulty reading and thus became “a problem to be solved.” She has worked on numerous communications projects for educational institutions and has taught at the college level. She has often observed the chal­lenges and opportunities that both educational organizations and businesses share when it comes to organizational learning.

Jane was happy to join Peter Gamwell as coauthor for The Wonder Wall: Leading Creative Schools and Organizations in an Age of Complexity and again with Thinker, Learner, Dreamer, Doer: Innovative Pedagogies for Cultivating Every Student’s Potential.

Jane freelances as a communications strategist and commercial writer by day and enjoys fiction writing by night, as well as spending time with her husband John, and their kids and grandkids, at the small MacLaren’s Landing beach community outside of Ottawa, Ontario, Canada.

Table of Contents

Table of Contents




About the Authors

Prologue: The Wonder Wall

1. The Start of Something Extraordinary

2. A Funny Thing Happened on the Way to the Future: The Connection Between Change and Creativity

3. The Imperatives for Creativity: Getting There Is a Three-Way Street

4. Lead the Way: Leadership Development

5. Condition #1: Storytelling and Listening

6. Condition #2: Moving Beyond Diversity to Inclusivity

7. Condition #3: Making It Personal

8. Condition #4: Celebrating

9. Assessing the Culture of Creativity: How to Get Buy-In and Fellow Travelers for Your Journey to the Extraordinary





For Instructors

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