Utne Blogs > Politics

Educating Children from the Head Down

 by Bennett Gordon


Tags: education, creativity, TED,

More important than long division and the Great Gatsby, an education is meant to teach children how to think. Unfortunately, teachers today are “educating people out of their creativity,” according to Sir Ken Robinson, speaking at the TED conference (video available below). Rather than teaching children how to think, feel, and move, students are taught, “progressively from the waist up,” neglecting dance, arts, and other subjects that encourage creativity. 

That loss of creativity threatens to undermine the current generation of young people in America. In an article reprinted from the Rake in the latest issue of Utne Reader, Jeannine Ouellette wrote that “it’s questionable whether tomorrow adults are learning to use the tools they’ll need to succeed.” Over-booking children’s schedules without leaving room for unstructured play time is threatening American innovation, and—possibly most importantly—it’s just no fun.