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Do schools kill creativity?<br />by Sir Ken Robinson<br />
Sir Ken Robinson says our education system works like a factory. It’s based on models of mass production and conformity that actually prevent kids from finding their passions and succeeding, he said.<br />
What all children have in common is that they will take a chance. They're not frightened of being wrong. I don't mean to say that being wrong is the same thing as being creative. But if you're not prepared to be wrong, you'll never come up with anything original. By the time they get to be adults, most kids have lost that capacity. They have become frightened of being wrong.<br />
Picasso once said that all children are born artists. The trick is to remain an artist as we grow up.<br />
Something strikes you when you travel around the world: Every education system on Earth has the same hierarchy of subjects. It doesn't matter where you go. You'd think it would be otherwise, but it isn't. At the top are mathematics and languages, then the humanities, and at the bottom are the arts -- everywhere on Earth.<br />
And in pretty much every system, too, there is a hierarchy within the arts. Music and art are normally given a higher status in schools than drama and dance. There isn't an education system on the planet that teaches dance every day to children the way we teach them mathematics.<br />
I likeuniversityprofessors, butweshouldn'tholdthemupastheexemplarsofallhumanachievement. They'rejustaformoflife. Butthey'rerathercurious, and I saythisoutofaffectionforthem. Typically, theyliveintheirheads. Theyliveupthere, andslightlytooneside. They'redisembodied, inakindofliteralway. Theylookontheirbodyasaformoftransportfortheirheads. It'sawayofgettingtheirheadtomeetings.<br />
If you want real evidence of out-of-body experiences, by the way, get yourself along to a conference of senior academics and pop into the nightclub on the final night. And there you'll see it: grown men and women writhing uncontrollably, off the beat, waiting for it to end so they can go home and write a paper about it.<br />
Academic ability has really come to dominate our view of intelligence, because the universities designed the system in their image. If you think of it, the whole system of public education around the world is a protracted process of university entrance. The consequence is that many highly talented, creative people think they're not, because the thing they were good at was not valued in school, or was actually stigmatized.<br />
Suddenly, degrees aren't worth anything like what they used to be worth. When I was a student, if you had a degree, you had a job, and if you didn't have a job, it was because you didn't want one. (And, frankly, I didn't want one.) But now, kids with degrees are often heading home to carry on playing video games, because you need a master's degree where the previous job required a bachelor's degree, and now you need a PhD for the job that once required an MA. It's a process of academic inflation, and it indicates that the whole structure of education is shifting beneath our feet and that we need to radically rethink our view of intelligence.<br />