Do Schools Kill Creativity?

This one might interest you if you are creative, work in education, have kids in school or are planning to live for decades to come.

Sir Ken Robinson makes me laugh out loud while exploring a topic close to my heart: how the future of our planet depends on the imagination and creativity of children, and on the way they’re nurtured.

I particularly love his story about “people who have to move to think”.

If you’d like to read about the struggle I had deciding how best to nurture my daughter’s creativity within the school curriculum, please check out my article, Sharing the Journey.

7 thoughts on “Do Schools Kill Creativity?

  1. And hence….why I don’t teach in a school. It drove me insane all the rules, guidelines and regulations about how and what I could teach my students. Or how much time I was forced to spend with administrative stuff the took so much out of the act of teaching. The only joy I had was organizing a science fair which turned out to be such a hit the first year it was part of the school culture the next year. I had absolutely no boundaries around what they could do.
    It broke my heart to leave that.
    I only tutor now and I do it my way.

  2. My husband and I were talking about this recently. We both agreed that between television and how teaching is these days, children have no idea what it is like to have an imagination. Little do children realize that behind those video games, music videos and so on, there is a lot of creativity and hard work. It is kind of sad and what makes it sadder is that no one seems to care.

    Nadia – Happy Lotus´s last blog post..Be Undeniably Good

    • @Maureen
      I know of other people who have left teaching because of all the admin and government imposed changes too. At least with tutoring you can use your own common sense and instincts as well as your teaching and coaching skills to make sure your student’s unique needs are truly catered for.
      @Nadia
      Interesting thing is, my 84 yr old dad was here this weekend and we were discussing schools, childhoods and different paradigms too. He was saying how smart he thought today’s kids are, with all their technological and computing skills and the subjects they get taught at school. (He left school at 13 to contribute to the family income.) But despite their hardships, I think his generation also had other blessings as kids; they had more freedom to play outside in nature, and ready-made games weren’t just served up to them on a plate. My dad’s a very imaginative, resourceful man, even now.
      @Cindy
      Your daughter’s school sounds awesome and I love your passion. These are the adults of our future and I certainly want my planet to be in the hands of happy, self-expressed people whose hearts, souls and minds are all thriving, creative and artistically able to cross cultural and linguistic boundaries, to celebrate the humanity and uniqueness in everyone else. Children are sponges and it’s our responsibility to make sure they’re soaking up what we feel is good for them.

  3. “We must rethink the fundamentals of how we educate the gift of human imagination.” The insight and delivery of Sir Ken resonates loudly in my soul and is the reason why we are so protective of our daughter’s learning in a dual immersion environment where Spanish is the language she learns and dreams in daily. The part about dancing on the lower end of the hierarchy of arts touched me deeply. Our daughter is alert, vivacious, articulate and expressive through all the school conventions, but this year through Ballet Folklorico Dance she was instructed in Spanish and learned dances from different cultures and regions of Mexico with 99 other students 2x a week for the past 90 days. She recently had her final performance for the year. It was a 2 week whirlwind of colors, movement, and thrills that showed innocence and beauty flowing naturally like a waterfall. She made eye contact with us. She danced for us. She danced with a team of 99 other people. When it was over. She said do I have to stop dancing? “Never,” we told her. “Good, because my feet can’t stop moving and I think better when I move.” she said. Thankfully, her teachers understand and embrace that thought. Her Senora’s words ring in my ears daily…”Let her be a child, let her imagination flow, she has it all at her fingertips if we allow her to grow in that direction.” Thankfully our teacher this year embraces this philosophy of rethinking the fundamentals of how we educate the gift of human imagination through language, writing, and performing arts. Keeping our fingers crossed that the path continues and knowing confidently that as parents we will ensure she gets the fuel her soul needs.
    Awesome food for thought. Thank you.

    Cindy´s last blog post..Being Honest Prevents Roadblocks

  4. Hey Janice, I ran across this post from a link on your last post. I can’t tell you how many times I’ve tried to write a post about my experience as a teacher. It just won’t happen; I get maudlin and overwhelmed thinking about it. Now Texas is the brunt of yet another national joke after a Board of Ed dick who had been voted from office but whose term had not yet expired managed to get seriously damaging changes made to state adopted civics and history textbooks.
    http://www.huffingtonpost.com/2010/03/13/texas-textbook-massacre-u_n_498003.html
    I can’t even say more about how this makes me feel. It’s just too sad. But the video was funny. I’m glad I ran across this.
    .-= Brenda´s last blog ..Twitter Peeps =-.

  5. Hi again, Brenda. Just skimmed the Huff piece. Oh.My.God! It’s terrifying. I also read something recently about a proposed law in Utah to make it possibe to have a mother who’s miscarried be charged with murder. I despair, and I don’t even live in either of those states.
    .-= janice´s last blog ..Mothering Sunday – Why We All Need One =-.

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