Why don’t we get the best out of people? Sir Ken Robinson argues that it’s because we’ve been educated to become good workers, rather than creative thinkers. Students with restless minds and bodies — far from being cultivated for their energy and curiosity — are ignored or even stigmatized, with terrible consequences. “We are educating people out of their creativity,” Robinson says. It’s a message with deep resonance. Robinson’s TEDTalk has been distributed widely around the Web since its release in June 2006. The most popular words framing blog posts on his talk? “Everyone should watch this.”
A visionary cultural leader, Sir Ken led the British government’s 1998 advisory committee on creative and cultural education, a massive inquiry into the significance of creativity in the educational system and the economy, and was knighted in 2003 for his achievements. His latest book, The Element: How Finding Your Passion Changes Everything, a deep look at human creativity and education, was published in January 2009.
Sir Ken is providing all of us in education with something we need. A big dose of inspiration. He is a funny guy…. there is no bench mark (yet) in education for humour but wouldn’t the test be fun. Can you imagine how much students would enjoy school if they were regularly tested by a National Assessment Program for Laughter and Nonsense!!!!
I agree completely with you, Heather. Sir Ken Robinson is a ‘must’ for educators. When my students work on a global project, they have to put together their resources onto a joint wiki. I have found this to be quite laborious as they are so slow, at working out the mechanics and the actual content to be put onto the wiki. Imagine my surprise when I asked the students what was the most difficult or challenging part of the project, and their response was “thinking of an idea or content of the video”! The final outcome of the project was creating a video summarizing what they had learnt or some aspect or what they had learnt. These students were year 10 and 11. From my observation, creativity disappears around the year 7/8 mark. Yet, this is the cornerstone of innovation, communication and connection in a global world.
Where did he actually visit? I assusme he was in Australia as I saw him on the 7:30 report.
When I hear Ken Robinson speak, I am reminded of why I got into teaching. It wasn’t to test kids and it wasn’t to tick them as they reached certain standards. It was to engage them, to nurture their creativity and to give them opportunities to satisfy their inquisitive minds. In a time when things seem to be getting increasingly regulated and stifled by bureaucracy, protocols and systems, it’s refreshing to hear views such as Robinson’s.
After I heard him on the ABC I was compelled to write a blogpost exploring a small number of the points he raised: http://contemporarylearning.global2.vic.edu.au/2009/06/17/cry-havok/