EDUO 9764: The Art of Doodling

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You must be currently teaching students to successfully complete this course.

Explore the benefits of doodling, from making random marks to intentional expression. Gain a deeper understanding of the power of the doodle.

From the Instructor

There has been a stigma attached to doodling. “It is a waste of time!” “You are not paying attention!”

In the past several years the tide of opinion has been slowly turning in doodling’s favor. Educators, business leaders, and the medical field are beginning to recognize emerging patterns of benefits related to the act of doodling.

“…doodling is deep thinking in disguise – a simple, accessible, and dynamic tool for innovating and solving even the stickiest problems. Doodling has led to countless breakthroughs in science, technology, medicine, architecture, literature, and art.”
Online book review: Sunni Brown’s The Doodle Revolution: Unlock the Power to Think Differently, BookPeople, 2014.

You will be engaged in a number of activities with your students that provide opportunities for them to doodle at several levels of involvement, from making random marks to intentional expression. They will also explore the benefits of doodling.

There are three types of student activities from which to choose:

  • Doodling experiments to determine the benefits of doodling.
  • Simulations of doodling that led to discoveries in mathematics.
  • Art lessons and explorations related to doodling.

There is an invitation for you to brainstorm with the instructor to design a doodling activity of your own and carry it out with your students. This is an opportunity for you to tailor a doodling activity to your current curriculum.

Doodling is therapeutic and cathartic in nature. It simultaneously relaxes the mind and also opens it up to novel solutions for difficult problems that are easier to solve by exploring visual relationships. Doodling provides another avenue for student success by appealing to the visual/spatial learner.

“While doodling gets a bad rap, it’s actually associated with better learning, creativity and performance. Here are five doodling benefits:

  • Doodling helps you concentrate
  • Doodling makes you a more productive employee
  • Doodling can also keep you in the present moment
  • Doodling is an outlet for every day creativity
  • Doodling helps you generate ideas”
  • Online article: 5 Big Benefits of Being a Doodler, Anna Almendrala, Huffpost Healthy Living, 2015.

This course is most appropriate for teachers of third grade through adult learners. The content of this course lends itself easily to teachers of art curriculum, but is used effectively by any teacher open to alternative ways of mastering complex ideas through visual brainstorming. Doodling is a dynamic way to represent science concepts in note-taking during lectures and personal study periods.

This course may not be appropriate for teachers who require traditional methods for studying and note taking.

“The Art of Doodling” is an unusual approach to learning that allows nontraditional methods that appeal to visual learners and provides another path to success for students.

Course Overview

You will be engaged in a number of activities with your students that provide opportunities for them to doodle at several levels of involvement, from making random marks to intentional expression, and they will also explore the benefits of doodling.

Course Objectives

The teacher will:

  • Engage the students in several levels of doodling, from abstract “fill-ins” to purposeful, intentional visual brainstorming.
  • Present several art lessons on drawing and shading three-dimensional figures.
  • Demonstrate elaborations and embellishments of simple figures.
  • Conduct an experiment with the students demonstrating how doodling improves retention of
  • Replicate several doodling simulations that led to mathematical discoveries.

Course Relation to CCS or other Professional Standards

The National Core Arts Standards:

  • Creating – 1. Generate and conceptualize artistic ideas and work.
  • Connecting – 10. Synthesize and relate knowledge and personal experiences to make art. California Department of Education – Visual and Performing Arts: Visual Arts Content Standards, Grade Three:
  • 1.0 Artistic Perception – 1.5 Identify and describe elements of art in works of art, emphasizing
    line, color, shape/form, texture, space, and value.

K-12 California’s Common Core Content Standards for Mathematics:

  • Grade K – Geometry: 6. Compose simple shapes to form larger shapes.
  • Grade one – Geometry: 2. Compose two-dimensional shapes or three-dimensional shapes to create a composite shape, and compose new shapes from the composite shape.
  • Grade two – Geometry: 1. Recognize and draw shapes having specified attributes, such as a
    given number of angles or a given number of equal faces.
  • Grade 8 – Geometry: 1. Verify experimentally the properties of rotations, reflections, and translations. 4. Understand that a two-dimensional figure is similar to another if the second can be obtained from the first by a sequence of rotations, reflections, translations, and dilations.

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Ron Kremer

B.A., M.A. in Elementary Education, Elementary mathematics and science emphasis

40 years: General elementary grade teacher, school district staff trainer, and staff developer for California Science Implementation Network.

Author and guest speaker at state level conferences for mathematics. Recognized for exemplary work in the field of education by the Johns Hopkins Institute for the Academic Advancement of Youth.

My goal is to convince teachers of the importance of "discovery learning" using open-ended, hands-on explorations.

I like working on projects around the home with my family. I sing tenor in our church choir and volunteer tutor at Shriners Children's Hospital."