Many students will soon be graduating from high school and getting ready to go to college. College graduates will join the ranks of thousands who are searching for a job. Sir Ken Robinson questions the entire educational process.
In the following TED talk he claims that creativity is as important as literacy and we should treat it with the same status. He defines creativity as the process of having good ideas that have value.
The fear is that we are educating people out of their creative capacities. Our education system is predicated on academic ability and how that translates into getting a job after graduation, but education is not necessarily empowering us to find jobs that we will enjoy or jobs that will encourage our creativity.
He tells the story of Gillian Lynne a famous choreographer for shows such as Cats and The Phantom of the Opera.
Lynne’s gift for dancing was discovered by a doctor. Lynne had been underperforming at school, so her mother took her to the doctor and explained about her fidgeting and lack of focus. After hearing everything her mother said, the doctor told Lynne that he needed to talk to her mother privately for a moment. He turned on the radio and walked out. He then encouraged her mother to look at Lynne, who was dancing to the radio. The doctor noted that she was a dancer, and encouraged Lynne’s mother to take her to dance school.
What would have happened to her life if the doctor had interpreted her case differently? Sir Robinson claims that somebody else may have “put her on medication and told her to calm down.”
I love this talk. It has been online for a while and it is definitely worth watching.