I enjoyed listening to Sir Ken Robinson. As a special education teacher, he spoke about things that I see in my classroom and where education has taken us, both teachers and students. His statement, “We don’t grow into creativity, we grow out of creativity; educated out of creativity” (Robinson, 2007). He is so true when do students after maybe kindergarten or first grade are embraced to dress uniquely, draw on a piece of paper or dance/move around a classroom. They usually do not. The idea of education changes and becomes less time for them to be them. Grades, assessments, and PSSA’s are surrounding how intelligent a student is. It saddens me, I see a group of students in my classroom that might not be proficient on the PSSA’s but the qualities and strengthens they possess are not being address or supported in education. The district where I first taught had to cut jobs and the first to go were the Art teacher, Music teacher, Family Consumer Science teacher, and Gym. What does that tell you of what the district thought of their importance? And as Robinson states all public schools believe the same ideals. The district added additional academic classes which did not help increase scores but it did increase negative behaviors and less students wanting to come to school. I do believe at this time school does kill creativity but with the integration of digital media I am believing there will be a change.
Becoming a 1:1 school for our seventh grade I have seen an increases interest with students when given projects to complete and even notes used on a digital classroom board. It has given them a place to “create” and try different ways of learning. I have two young ladies in my classroom who love to draw and are quite good, I try to incorporate activities to let them take that drawing and apply it to their projects and learning. Just watching what students pick to use in a powerpoint, font size, font style or pictures just captures their creativity and also provides them with a sense of themselves and who they are. When I listened to Sir Ken Robinson speak and reading the chapter from Howard Gardner I think of the creative mind as a growth mindset, students should take chances and not be scared to be wrong because once they become scared to be wrong they will stop being creative. As educators, we need to support the idea for students as well guide them into their future.
Ken Robinson - "Do Schools Kill Creativity" on TED (Technology, Entertainment, Design) website (available online)Transcript Ken Robinson's Do School Kill Creativity video