Creativity-Infused Learning Environment

The Creative Learning Center will incorporate all of the creative outlets into the traditional school subjects in order to enhance learning, encourage creativity, and strengthen gifts. Creative outlets include, but are not limited to, art/photography, theater/showmanship, cooking/gardening, math/numbers, music/dance, video games/computers, fashion/ sewing, puzzles/mazes, and building/electronics. We will also integrate more creative-oriented subjects such as mythology, cultures, and nature. As Daniel Pink said in his oft-quoted Wired magazine article, Revenge of the Right Brain, we are in the era of being creators. In order to meet the demands of our current society, our schools need to value creativity.

The Creative Outlets

I’ve discussed here the type of school subjects that interest right-brained children most, and why. But I haven’t taken the time to discuss a category of subjects that are at the heart of a right-brained person: what I term the creative outlets. These are art/photography, theater/showmanship, cooking/gardening, math/numbers, music/dance, video games/ computers, fashion/sewing, puzzles/mazes, or building/electronics.

In school, these are extra-curricular activities, or what they might classify as “specials” or “electives.” You may not even see many of these in school anymore. I know we used to have home economics where cooking and sewing were taught. There was shop class (building) that some of the (mainly) boys took. Often, there may still be art classes, theater classes, and music classes (both band and choral). Today, there are computer labs. It would be rare to find photography or dance, except at a specific magnet art school. If a school brings in a garden, it’s considered innovative. And though we consider math to be a staple in mass institutions of learning, it mostly falls under arithmetic, a very different animal.

Even if we’re lucky enough to see evidences of these “subjects” offered in school, they are separated opportunities to dabble momentarily. For right-brained people, they are drawn to these activities because they need a creative outletinterspersed in all they do and experience. If right-brained people don’t get to express themselves creatively a good part of their day, they only half live. To read the rest of this post, click here.

How Schools Kill Creativity

Sir Ken Robinson also has a lot to say about the need and value for creativity to be an integral part of an excellent 21st century school. Some of the good quotes in this talk:

  • Creativity is as important in education as literacy, and we should treat it with the same status.
  • …all children have tremendous talents. And we squander them, pretty ruthlessly.
  • If you’re not prepared to be wrong, you’ll never come up with anything original.
  • We don’t grow into creativity, we grow out of it. Or rather, we get educated out of it.
  • There isn’t an education system on the planet that teaches dance everyday to children the way we teach them mathematics. Why? Why not? … Children dance all the time if they’re allowed to, we all do. We all have bodies, don’t we?
  • Our education system has mined our minds in the way that we strip-mine the earth: for a particular commodity. And for the future, it won’t serve us. We have to rethink the fundamental principles on which we’re educating our children.

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