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Reverse Brainstorming


25 minutes

Learning Outcomes

Participants practice thinking out of the box by tackling problems from a new angle. One main goal of this activity is for the participants to learn to use creativity to solve problems.


Students are often faced with a specific problem to solve, e.g. how to minimise pollution. However, in this session, participants must brainstorm on how to achieve the opposite – so in this example, how to maximise pollution. 

Afterwards, participants must come up with ideas to solve the real problem based on the outcomes, ideas and thoughts that came up during the first part of the activity. 

This process reveals ideas that wouldn’t have come up in the opposite case and will stimulate participants’ creativity in relation to solving problems. 

Note – If the class is not very talkative, the activity would not last long, so it depends on the type of class that it will be better or worse. Students need to be encouraged to begin to debate and participate.

Ideas For Reflection

Discuss the results as well as the process: 

  • What was it like to tackle the problem this way? 
  • What did they learn? 
  • If they had done a traditional brain-storming, do they think that some of the ideas would not have come up? 
  • Can they think of any other creative/innovative strategies for problem-solving? 

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