The goal of the present research was to investigate if creative thinking can be trained in primary school children. Imagination represents one of the bases of the creative thinking process: a skilled imaginative ability, developed in early age, fosters creative processes, producing numerous and flexible mental images, easily malleable and useful to generate new ideas and combine elements in innovative ways. The study aims to analyse one of the factors of the creative thinking process, the capacity to produce ideas, and to enhance it in children through a specific 10-week training of imagination and divergent thinking. Starting from the TCI, an Italian mental reactive designed for measuring the potential of creative thinking in individual children, a different Test was made up with the objective to test 224 children belonging to 10 primary school classes (5 second grades and 5 third grades), achieving group scores. The purpose was to investigate if children’s attitude to think creatively and divergently would improve after participating to 10 interactive one-hour group training sessions. The activities were aimed at training 3 abilities - capacity to produce ideas, ability to think of many possible purposes for an object, contra-factual thinking - each measured in T0 and T1 from one part of the Test created. They were all tested in T0; afterward 8 out of the 10 classes were weekly trained, before being all 10 classes tested again in T1, 10 weeks after T0. The hypothesis was that the trained classes would have improved the capacity of producing ideas, whereas the control groups would have not. It was so verified the efficacy of the specific method to train creative thinking that was conceived, developed and administered to the children.
Keywords: Creativity, creative thinking, divergent thinking, primary school, cognitive training.