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Video from TED talks : How schools kill creativity, Ken Robinson.

The aim of this talk is to show that all the children, when they born, have a talent for
something, and that the education we give them kills their ability to find it.
Ken Robinson starts its demonstration by explaining how by growing up, we become
afraid of being wrong. Indeed nowadays companies stigmatise mistakes, and kill
originality. Because if you are prepared for being wrong, you are not scared by saying
something false, and you might be original and creative.
Then Mr Robinson broaches the public education subject. According to him, every
educational system is based on the same hierarchy. On top are the mathematics and
languages, then human sciences and at the end, arts, where music and art are given a
higher state in school than drama and dance. He adds that if you look at the people who
have the better marks and succeed everywhere in school, you understand that the main
purpose of the educational system is to produce university professors. Educational
systems appeared at the same time as industrialisation, and they prepare us for what is
useful later at work.
The talk ends on the idea that we have to preserve the creativity, like a human ecology.
We should see the children as the hope they represent, and not as future professors who
lost their creativity and were afraid to share their ideas.

As a student in scientific school, I agree with him on some points. Indeed, it is true that
as long as you are a good student and you are passionate by what you are studying, the
system incites you to continue learning. If it occurs that you are not made to enter the
mould, then it is very hard to figure what is your talent for, or what you are good at,
because nothing prepared you to discover your skills in an other field. Mr Robinson
rather talks about arts than non conventional jobs fields like the hotel business, or
oenology or agriculture. But he is right on the fact that the public educational system
does not prepare children to do whatever they want.
In my school, I had courses in music and arts. It was not very important in comparison
to maths and physics, and it was presented as a course to open our minds. I dont know
anyone who decided to become a musician thanks to those lessons. It was often the
children who were learning music outside schools hours, who were good at these
lessons, and showed an interest at it.

However nowadays, to get a job in our society, we have to graduate. A license is
sometimes not enough, you need a master, or a PhD. The American dream does no
longuer exist, and if you are willing to get your dream job, you will have to do the right
courses for it. For example, further it was possible to get a higher position if you did
work well, even if you did not have the graduation needed: a good technician was able to
get the job of an engineer, now it is not possible anymore. This means that you dont
have the choice, and you have to shape the educational system.

However, as I travelled in Germany and England, I experienced educational systems

that were completely different to the french one. In Germany, when you go to high
school, almost all your afternoons are free for leisure time. Children are then free to do
whatever they want that it is not taught at school, like music, arts, dance, sports
Nevertheless, even this seemingly perfect system has some limits ! Over a first phase,
all those activities have a cost and it sometimes not possible for the parents to give an
access to these activites to their children. Moreover, even if it lets time to children to
open their minds to creativity, they have to practive it by knowing that some day they
will have to do a choice between school and their activity. Finally those who choose to
give a higher significance to their passion, a very few of them succeed to live from it.
Because in our society, if youre not a genius in your domain of creativity, then you wont
be noticed.

As a conclusion, I think that Mr Robinson is true when he says that our educational
systems kill creativity. Even so, the latters are forced to adapt to the society, if their goal
if for everyone to have a job and live from it. Thus, I think that if you want to be creative
and distinguish yourself, it has to become from a self introspection, a self initiative. The
world doesnt need everyone to be a creative person, although our main life
improvements come from a one-man-idea.