Digital Lit. #12: Creativity in School, Sir Ken Robinson’s TED

I am no aficionado, but this was by far the best TED talk I have seen.  Perhaps, the most hard hitting lines of the speech were, “All kids have tremendous talents and we squander them.”  I completely agree that we focus more on what others tell us our students need to learn then we allow students to grow creatively.  He went on to say, “We are educating people out of their creative capacities.”  We force feed education to students and demand them to conform to a system which tells them there is only one answer.

Robinson explains the hierarchy of education which also leads to minimizing creativity being from top to bottom math and languages, then humanities and at the bottom are the arts.  Within each category there are mini hierarchies.  For example art and music rank higher than theatre and dance.  Many schools systems first cut the arts, which are classes that embody creativity, from the curricula.

This hierarchy stigmatizes students by making them feel inadequate for not being successful at what is deemed important according to the hierarchy.  Because we are failing our students we must reform our educational systems in order to place value on creativity so that all students can flourish.


One thought on “Digital Lit. #12: Creativity in School, Sir Ken Robinson’s TED

  1. It’s so hard to know what to do about this too, because we are all stuck in institutions and systems that don’t seem very flexible or open to change. My new teachers want to get out there and change the world–and it needs to be changed! But they find no encouragement or support for that when they get out into their school. My son does not learn in the ways we privilege in school. Elementary school worked really well for him. 6th grade is not working very well. Sometimes I think every school and class needs to be more like kindergarten! There’s a reason why I learn the most for my own college level teaching from elementary teachers! They really understand pedagogy and psychology and they know that what they’re really teaching is attitude, habits of mind, love of learning–not content knowledge. I think our mania for stuffing kids full of content knowledge is where our schools really go wrong. But in a climate that prizes test scores over everything else, it’s no wonder we find no place for creativity. How can you measure that?


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