Fertile Mind

Are schools stifling creativity? Sir Ken Robinson tells Jessica Shepherd why learning should be good for the soul.

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“All children start their school careers with sparkling imaginations, fertile minds, and a willingness to take risks with what they think,” he says. “Most students never get to explore the full range of their abilities and interests … Education is the system that’s supposed to develop our natural abilities and enable us to make our way in the world. Instead, it is stifling the individual talents and abilities of too many students and killing their motivation to learn.”

“The entire notion of “subjects” needs to be questioned, he says. “The idea of separate subjects that have nothing in common offends the principle of dynamism. School systems should base their curriculum not on the idea of separate subjects, but on the much more fertile idea of disciplines … which makes possible a fluid and dynamic curriculum that is interdisciplinary.”