Date of Award

December 2022

Degree Type


Degree Name

Doctor of Philosophy


Curriculum and Instruction

First Advisor

Nancy K. File

Committee Members

Rajeswari Swaminathan, Hope Longwell-Grice, Kim Cosier


accountability movement, action research, creativity, curriculum, imagination, possibility thinking


The purpose of this qualitative action research study was to examine a published language arts curriculum, determine how Anna Craft’s possibility thinking framework could be integrated into the curriculum, and then observe how students responded to the implementation of lessons integrating the elements of possibility thinking. The findings revealed that a teacher can use the possibility thinking elements to encourage creativity while still teaching the objectives of a published curriculum. Creativity development can be encouraged by using a variety of supports that build possibility thinking. The data demonstrated a connection between life experiences and the curriculum through possibility thinking. The data also indicated that visual bridges in connection with writing can encourage the imagination. Flexible story structure and independent learning featured narrative as a tool to encourage the possibility thinking elements through dance, creating stories, and puppet plays. In addition, problem-solving played a key role when connected with narrative and collaboration to support the encouragement of creativity through the possibility thinking elements. Where students were engaged in collaboration, narrative, and problem-solving activities in connection with literacy instruction, it led to an increase in possibility thinking amongst students.