Thursday, October 23, 2008

Ken Robinson: Do schools kill creativity?

Ken Robinson begins his speech by addressing human creativity. He identifies the mystery of creativity for the future. Robinson continues to state how much creativity is limited due to work in education. Even if a child has a talent, schools have learned to hide and hinder their talent. Robinson believes creativity is just as important in school as academics. I really enjoyed all the stories about the little kids, especially the story of the little girl drawing a picture of God. It showed that the creativity in some kids have not been completely limited be education from schools. I like that Robinson touched upon the fact that like kids (and almost all humans) make mistakes and that people should take chances. Robinson states that one should always be prepared to be wrong, try things out, and be ready to make mistakes. One cannot learn from mistakes if they don’t keep trying. Robinson tells his audience not to associate creativity with mistakes, but he does state that if one isn’t prepared to be wrong than one cannot be creative and come up with anything original. I really like the Picasso quote Robinson used in his speech that “all children are born artists,” but “to remain an artist as we grow up.” Robinson states that people are “educated out of it.” A person’s artist is than lost, and thus, their creativity. Robinson addresses that every education system around the world as the same hierarchy that begins with mathematics and languages, then the humanities, and then the arts. Within the arts, drama and dance is usually the bottom. Education focuses mainly on one’s head and their brain. Robinson states education system is developed by academic ability because of one’s ability to get a job. One would take a subject to help them get a valuable job for the future. Robinson states that now with academic inflation, students are required to have much more than just a degree in order to get a job. There are many new requirements that disable students from getting jobs. Robinson defines creativity as the process of having original ideas that have value. I think Robinson used the right amount of personal experiences in order to display his thought process and verbalize his stream of consciousness. I really liked the story about Gillian Lynne. The story was about how Gillian was fidgety as a child; one might consider her to be ADHD. Gillian went to see a specialist with her mother. The specialist spoke to Gillian’s mother about how she was always disturbing people and not turning in her homework on time and just a very hyper energetic girl. When the specialist took Gillian’s mother out of the room to talk to her privately, the specialist turned on the radio while leaving. Gillian started moving to the music as soon as they left the room. The specialist concluded that she’s a dancer and that she must be taken to a dance school. So her mother did take her to a dance school. In order to think, she had to think in the way she knew, which was to dance. Some teacher could have told her to calm down by giving her medication or by hindering her spirits, but instead this teacher told her to explore her talents. Gillian Lynne became very successful with her career in dance and later discovered the Gillian Lynne dance school, amongst other accomplishments. Robinson concludes his speech by stating that parent’s duty is to educate their children in order for them to face the future without them, and to make something out of their future.

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