Sunday, July 7, 2013

Blog Post #12
Sir Ken Robinson is an English author and an international speaker on education. In his video, How to Escape Education's Death Valley, Sir Ken Robinson explains the American culture of education and the three principles that humans thrive which are diversity, curiosity, and creativity. He also explains how current education works against them. He explains how humans are naturally different and diverse by explaining how a parent has two or more kids, the parents would never get them mixed up. I like his example of kids being diagnosed with ADHD because he is completely right about kids fidgeting after doing hours of school work (I personally think everyone would be fidgeting).

In the video, Ken states "Teachers are the lifeblood of the success of schools." I agree with this statement because the teacher is the one who guides the students on being successful and if the students are successful then it looks good on the school. And this is why I think teachers should get paid more. He addresses the fact that each child is unique in their own way because of their creativity. He explains that we should convert the way we learn to nurture skills and talents of children in order for the "death valley" to change.

Chris May- Ken Robinson

In Ken Robinson’s video Changing education paradigms he talks about how every country around the world is reforming public education. He gives two reasons for this. The first is economic. He goes on to say how can we prepare students to find their place in the economy in the 21st century. Thats a pretty hard task to accomplish especially considering how rapidly our economy is changing. The second reason is, cultural identity. He says that every country is trying to educate their students to have a cultural identity as well. Sir Ken Robinson then provides a very good point. That those two reasons are trying to be accomplished by doing what was done in the past. He explains that in doing this it is alienating kids, in which makes them think there is no point in going to school. Students have always been taught that if you work hard and go to college and get a degree you will have a job. The problem with that now days is that receiving a degree does not necessarily mean you will immediately have a job. He then goes on to explain that our present education system was created for a different time with different economies and such. After speaking on that Sir Ken moves to the debate of ADHD. He says that he can not say that there is no such thing as ADHD because he is not qualified to do so. He says that he knows for a fact that ADHD is not an epidemic. He then says that the children of today are living in the most stimulated period in the history of the earth. He is saying that children are given all types of things like xbox, cellphones, and TV shows, then the children are perpetrated for being easily distracted. The students are then given medicine to keep them focused on the boring school stuff. He then says that the rise of the prevalence of ADHD has risen at a parallel pace with the growth of standardized tests. He says that this seems more than coincidence to him. He goes on to say that we are getting our kids and students through class by giving them these drugs for ADHD and numbing them but what we should be doing is waking them up. He then says that our education system is set up on a production line type of standard in a sense that things are still ran on bells and there are separate facilities and things are all separated by age groups. Basically he is giving a very interesting example of burp back education. He also says that this is creating conformity. Sir Ken Robinson has a very eye opening opinion on our education system. I would have to say that I agree with him on most everything he is saying but, I must disagree with him on the argument of ADHD. I disagree because I suffer from ADHD. I would agree that there are plenty of students who take medicine for ADHD that have absolutely no need for it but there are some people who really truly have attention disorders. I have a very hard time keeping my focus on a single task even without stimulants like iPhones, games, and music. I could be in a blank room with only a piece of paper pencil and a writing assignment and still have a very short attention span. All in all I really enjoyed this video and I would like to see more of Sir Ken Robinson.

Sir Ken Robinson:  Importance of creativity

Mr. Robinson is a well-spoken and funny man. I loved the way he presented his ideas and how he added humor to keep it interesting. What we shouldn't take from the video is all the humor but remember what his main argument was. Mr. Robinson wants our children to learn and be able to live in a world that we can’t even predict. Know the Importance of Creativity. Like me, Mr. Robinson believes that education and school is getting too caught up in the basics of teaching. Of course math, reading, writing, are important but what about the skills children can show and use outside of a regular classroom setting. I think he used a great example about the little girl who was thought of to have some type of mental disorder. The little girl couldn't be still because she just loved to dance. Well that little girl grew up to become a famous dancer and now is a millionaire. But, that little girl would have never got the chance to show her creativity if somebody didn't take out the time to really see why she acted the way she did.

Mr. Robinson wants the world to know that we shouldn't strip away our children of creativity and that the public school system needs to stop telling children they are wrong all the time because they are different. Every child has their own skills and niche but how will we know it if we don't let every child express their own ideas and feeling. Not every child will grow up to be a teacher, biologists, or doctor. So, as teachers it is their duty to allow the students to express every aspect of their being whether it be mentally, academically, athletically, etc. This too helps generations to come because the little girl that I wrote about in my previous paragraph will never forget what her teacher did for her and she will be that support for another creative student. To prepare our children for the future we must first learn from them and allow them to show their own creativity.


  1. I also likes his comment about children fidgeting after sitting for hours. After sitting for so long I have to get up and move around to stretch. I don't think that I'm ADHD lol. I enjoyed reading your post keep up the good work.

  2. Kai,

    What are some of the ways for American educators to bust out of the "death valley" mentality? How can we help students pay attention and really grasp the material?