There has been much talk in the past few years about creativity and innovation and its place in business and other organizations including schools. A wide array of books, articles, blogs and videos on creativity have appeared:
- Whole New Mind: Why Right-brainers Will Rule the Future by Dan Pink
- Creating Innovators: The Making of Young People Who Will Change The World by Tony Wagner
- Do Schools Kill Creativity? by Sir Ken Robinson
- Out of our Minds: Learning to be Creative by Sir Ken Robinson
- Imagine: How Creativity Works by Jonah Lehrer (It should be pointed out that recently Lehrer has admitted to fabricating some of his quotes, while this unethical act is deplorable, the book does do a good job of synthesizing the current research on creativity)
- The Neuroscience of Creativity and Insight: Eric Kandel, a pioneer of neuroscience and the author of The Age of Insight discusses creativity and the brain.
- Explaining Creativity: The Science of Human Innovation by Keith Sawyer
- Why Travelling Abroad Makes Us More Creative: Sam McNerney Interesting research on travel and its effect on creativity.
- The Divided Brain: Iain McGilchrist In the following video, McGilchrist brilliantly describes right and left brain functioning and the role of creativity and intuition in humans:
Creativity in schools and in society is an exciting new area of research. While the inner workings of creativity is not fully understood, functioning as a creative individual is an essential aspect of twenty first century life.
Dan Pink in his book, Whole New Mind: Why Right-brainers Will Rule the Future, suggests that the developed world needs creativity workers more than it does computer programer or MBAs. Due to the the mechanization of many linear tasks through technology the need for creativity is on the rise.
…the keys to the kingdom are changing hands. The future belongs to a very different kind of person with a very different kind of mind—creators and empathizers, pattern recognizers, and meaning makers. These people—artists, inventors, designers, storytellers, caregivers, consolers, big picture thinkers—will now reap society’s richest rewards and share its greatest joys.
Largely due to the impact of technology and the internet, we are beginning to see innovative trends crop up throughout the world of education. Online learning is taking hold, new models of engaging learners is becoming the new reality and greater personalization and customization of the learning experience for individual students is becoming a realizable goal.
More and more we see the importance of empowering students in their learning and providing them with a real voice in their educational experience. For example, grade 8 students at the Calgary Science School were involved in an exciting project to redesign schooling for the twenty first century.
If we are to remain relevant to todays’ learners and if we are to prepare them well for their future, the development of creative thinking skills in our students (and teachers) need to be nurtured and developed.
It is worth pondering these prescient words of Albert Einstein:
The intuitive mind is a sacred gift and the rational mind is a faithful servant. We have created a society that honors the servant and has forgotten the gift.