Let me begin by saying that I was really excited to see Ken Robinson’s Ted video on the list of required viewings. My aunt Betsy is good friends with Sir Ken and I had to the pleasure of meeting him 2 years ago when we went to visit her. He is seriously awesome.
His video about how school kills creativity especially strikes a chord with me, and in many ways relates to the discussion we had in class last week about how education could be changed. I love the way he recognizes the potential in everybody and points out the way our industrial education system only hands favors to certain strengths. The fact that the education hierarchy remains the same around the globe and delivers less funding and attention to art, music, dance, and the like raises an interesting question, why? As Mae Jemison points out, we separate subjects in school into very clear categories. Making connections between different areas of learning is important, and can lead not only to personal growth, but to incredible growth in education and important discovery. Scientific Media Design provides a great example of this- while science is regarded as an important (yet underfunded and often poorly taught) subject in public schools, the connection between science and art is seldom made. Again, why?
Providing a more fluid education system would not only benefit people with different strengths and styles of learning, but could also help students build what David Kelly would call their creative confidence. Our education system should strengthen creative confidence and critical thinking, instead we have a system that rewards obedience and timeliness. These things may be desirable in a workplace, but do they create great minds? Does a system this restrictive allow students to reach their full potential? I think the answer is no, and that all of these talks provide wonderful insight into our own potential and the potential of society if only we change the way we think about education and, ultimately, change the way things are done.