Creativity and Education
As a mentor and coach, I have an active interest in how formal education and work I may do in the arts/music interact. I am also very fortunate in that my wife is a teacher, I have friends who work in colleges and teach, some teaching music and music technology. I have friends who work at universities, in theatre companies and theatre departments. I have friends who work solely in music, but see their part of their roles as producers and musicians as fostering creativity, and see their profession as a partially educational role. I have a rich and diverse bunch of viewpoints at my fingertips (or at my ear-drums at least), however a common thread is that formal education isn’t tailored to learners needs when it comes to creative endeavour.
Sir Ken Robinson has some fascinating and inciteful words and thoughts in this talk at the TED conference, for example, that really the only people who tend to shine in our academic systems, are academics. While this sounds fairly obvious, that every educational system in the world favours literacy, mathematics, science and the humanities above the arts only serves to further the status quo; that creative thinkers, dancers, musicians and artists are rewarded for prioritising subjects other than the ones they most engage with. Sir Ken argues that by instilling a fear of “getting something wrong” we educate children out of creative thinking. Sir Ken champions a view I share enthusiastically, that “Creativity is as important in education as literacy and we should treat it with the same status”.
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It’s a video that’s appears many times across the internet, and is most described as “Everyone should watch this”. Here’s hoping that opinions like these continue to form a larger and larger part of of our educational programmes and that creativity is as valued a quality in our schools, colleges and universities as academic ability.