Monday, September 3, 2007

(innate) Creativity in Humans


Remember a few days ago when I asked all of you what you thought creativity was and why it was important? Well, I'd like all of you to watch this short (20 minutes...it is worth it)video of a presentation by Sir Ken Robinson all about the importance of creativity.
Then, think about your own experiences with "creativity", and tell me what you think about this topic.

19 comments:

bigbadteacher said...

I just checked the link. The video should start playing as soon as the page loads. Email me if you have any problems!

tnap said...

Wow! That was very inspiring! I think he's right. At McCutcheon highschool, there is a diploma called "Honors with Distinction." You need 8 credits it math, 8 credits in english, 6 credits in a foreign language, but only 2 credits in the fine arts. A lot of students won't take anything but basic art classes because the fee's for more advanced ones are ridiculous. For example, in a Photo class I took last year, the tech fee was $65, plus another $60 to rent a camera. I think it sucks that these classes have to be so expensive, and unavailable for ALL students. I think it's getting more recognized lately that creativity is a vital part of education. Not too long ago, MTV had a promotion called "Save the Music" that donated money to schools who were thinking about getting rid of their music (band, choir etc.) programs. Creativity is an important thing, not only in school, but in everyday life.

skiye said...

I'm going to have to agree with Sir Robinson, I do believe that children's creativity is repressed due to education and other factors because of person experience. All the schools I have ever gone to has place fine arts last on the list of required courses. Many students were forced to drop the Art electives because their schedules could not work out with them and were made to take another science, math or English class to fill the gap. As for the story about Gillian Lynne, I happen to know a few kids back west that were the same way, it may not have necessarily been dancing but anything else they wanted to do as an art form. Everything has an art and science side to it, whether it be fixing cars or building an atomic bomb, art is needed in everything that we do as a society.

exquisitedesign said...

That video is true in almost every aspect. Creativity is diminishing within education rapidly, and it will be sooner than we think to where there is hardly any creativity at all. I know when I was in elementary school, every year we would have to listen to a precomposed tape for, I believe it was Symphony in Color. There were maybe 5 songs on it and we had the ability to choose which song we liked. From there we would draw and paint a picture that we felt represented the musical composition. To me, that's nothing but creativity. On the other hand, when I got to high school, I had one art teacher that said, "Make this your own artwork and be creative", but she gave us a list of guidelines we had to follow. If someone wants a creative piece of work, then don't give boundaries to hinder their imagination just so they can meet a specific grade criteria. I think another problem with education is that they focus on the core classes only because that was what we were tested on state wide (ISTEP, SAT's, ACT's), so schools always had to make sure they met state standards in those areas and cared less about the fine arts.

big bad teacher said...

Remember, your comments for this post are due by Monday Sept. 10th.

Naner said...

That was great. I agreed completely with everything he had to say. Art has been so often looked at as a useless class that does nothing for the student or their future. This is quite the contrary, the art classes I took in high school taught me a lot more than just how to draw and take photos. These classes showed me a great way to relieve stress, they showed me beauty in everyday objects, and they gave me a new creative outlook on life. It is such a shame that students today look at art classes as blow off courses. In all reality arts are the classes that I actually learned from and took this knowledge with me into the real world. Also if a student wanted to take dance at my school, you had to drive yourself to a class offered only at a different school. I would have loved to take dance, but I never got the chance. It really is a shame, art is just as important as any other studies that are beat into our brains.

RetroClide said...

Sadly, art, music and foreign language courses are typically the first classes to be cut when schools must make budget cuts. Unfortunately, public schools in American do not place a strong emphasis on creative or cultural education. Although, the instructors, and often the administrators, cannot be blamed. So much of these problems come from the top down. The Bush Administration's push for the No Child Left Behind agenda has made it too difficult for most schools to keep up with the rigors of a program that has been proven ineffective (http://www.nochildleft.com/). In that same vein, there seems to be an unwritten understanding that creating art and music are playtime pursuits for young children. As children age, they should be more focused on the rigors of study—as if creating isn’t an admirable pursuit. That isn’t a problem that exists only in schools, though. I think that’s a problem that permeates far too many facets of American educational and child rearing cultures.

livefish said...

I remember when I wasn't even in school hanging with my grandma just painting and playing with clay. She has kept every single piece of art work that I have ever done for her. Now I hardly create anything unless it was in my art class. I truly miss just playing with your mind and creating different pictures and objects on a single sheet of paper. As the school years went on I wasn't able to do art as much as I wanted to. I signed up for every art class and club i could get my hands on but that still wasn't as much as I had as a little kid. I think that the schools are realizing that they aren't pushing the fine arts as they do with Math and Libs. I have seen certain schools now starting up programs that are opening the fine arts to the community and the kids. More are being invovled. I think that more are interested in music and arts and are success stories. One of the major reasons why we left the fine arts was because people couldn't get jobs with it. I think that's opening up now too. I believe what he was saying that if you are afraid of failing then you will never create something original. Is'nt that what Americans want? To be original? Who knows...maybe the public schools will be more open to the fine arts in the years to come...hopefully!

Kaitlin said...

Ted is a wise man! :) It's really awesome that he was able to so effectively value and celebrate creativity. There definitely is a huge emphasis put on math, science, etc. when really it's important to exercise our creativity. This world wouldn't be interesting if people didn't think interesting thoughts to make it so. Some individuals are very much gifted artistically and at the same time encouraged to pursue other dreams. If our world could learn to encourage creativity we would definitely all be better off for it...it is always needed. It's strange how we know life is much more enjoyable when lived creatively, but then discourage it at the same time.

artperson said...

The modern education system is not lacking creativity entirely. Now if your looking to express yourself through some kind of medium you will have to elect some sort of art course in order to do that, but as far as the education system not having any creativity whatsoever is up to the instructor. A lot of it will have to do with the teachers level of creativity and how she decides to incorporate it into the lesson plan.

duranls1 said...

sometimes school might kill creativity in some potential artists, but is up to them to think out of the box, Sir Ken Robinson is right. I remember a good friend of mine from Jefferson High School that was with me at the amateur art classes, he was one of the most capable artist in that class, his creativity capture my attention for his form and style, unfortunately our teacher back then try to compress some of that creativity in a "moderate" way as she said, anyways now those walls that hold his artist skill are no longer controlling him, he and I still in contact due to emails and seem he is doing great in Chicago art institute, good for him and for anyone that keep following their dreams despise the holds of school and educators.

Without creativity we would never have evolved into what now is modern society.

Marc said...

He makes jokes about public education emphasizing math and hard sciences over the fine arts. I would argue against so many of the points he makes, but I'll just limit it to a couple ideas.

First, public education is designed to educate people to give them the best chance for success afterwards. Browse salary.com for occupations with a foundation in math and hard sciences and the fine arts, that will justify that point quickly enough. But, schools still offer many subjects in music, arts and theater for those who desire it. As for the requirements, what good is having a broad education in the arts when you had 2 credits of math in high school and can't even do your own taxes or figure out a tip at a restaurant.

Coming from an engineering major, I also took offense to the notion that fine arts are the sole bastion for creativity. I can't paint, sing, or draw at all, but coming up with solutions to engineering tasks takes a creativity all its own. Applying math and science to design a stronger bridge support or more advanced medical equipment is just as creative as any song or painting to me.

Robinson said...

Marc-

I think you made your decision about the video before you watched it.

Also, you're wrong about the purpose for which the American, public school system (k-12) was designed. It was actually designed to make good little worker bees for the industrial revolution. Which, clearly, is over in our country. It's China's turn for that.

James A. said...

^^ Im going to have to agree with Marc on this; he was thinking the same thing I was when watching this video. Schools are supposed to prepare you for life, help you get the best job making the most money possible. Yes the arts will have to take a back seat to math, english etc... because there are more jobs in these fields. While I agree that art is important, not everyone needs to experience creating art or to take an art class in high school/ middle school....

If everyone decided they wanted to stay home all day painting pictures of flowers then the world would be very different (obviously very extreme situation). But the balance between the arts and other studies is fine, people have the choice to explore there creative side if they so choose to.

bigbadteacher said...

Creativity exists in more areas than art. Without creativity in math and science, we would have gotten nowhere...I just want to point that out.

jpayne said...

Creativity is a very key and important factor in life. It is bringing an idea or thought to life through written word, paintings, sculptures, etc. Although some schools may not offer as many art classes as others it doesnt mean that they don't offer other areas for the student or teacher to be creative. I agree that it exists in more areas than just the form or art work. Think about the things you use in your daily routine and you'll quickly realize that there are many things that simply wouldn't exist today if it were not for creativity. For example: toothbrushes, refrigerators, clothing, cars, books, etc. (Even though they could all be considered a form of art I guess, there was more to making the items than just that.) When I was in high school we had a creative writing assignment that we were supposed to let our minds wander to the ends of the earth for. However, we were limited to certain topics and it had to be a certain length and all that. If we were really going to be creative then we should have been able to write anything that came to mind (within reason obviously) and it should have been as long as we wanted to make it. Creativity is a topic that you could discuss for a long time because there are so many directions you could go with it, but that is a breif idea of how I look at it!

Anonymous said...

Even as an undergrad I never bought that a person couldn't be creative within the confines of an assignment. I always loved the challenge of bending an assignment to fit what I wanted to do. Having parameters generally makes for stronger work - whether it's a painting or automotive engineering. It's like lifting weights... it develops your ability to be creative within the confines of, say... a customer's specs.

aydin1107 said...

I would agree also. I remember when I was in high school fine arts were not the ones you needed to do well in. Actually, most people were not taking them by the time they were in high school. And, the kids who couldn't afford instruments were the ones usually taking choir as an elective. But, anyways I think the arts are definitely underrated.

bigbadteacher said...

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