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I am a student at the University of South Alabama, College of Education. My husband Brian and I have been married since 2004, and in 2010 welcomed our son Deigan. I also work full-time as the Marketing Specialist for a local Real Estate company.

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Sunday, November 10, 2013

Sir Ken Robinson...

sir ken robinsonSir Ken Robinson, PhD is an internationally recognized leader in the development of creativity, innovation and human resources in education and in business. He is also one of the world’s leading speakers on these topics, with a profound impact on audiences everywhere. The videos of his famous 2006 and 2010 talks to the prestigious TED Conference have been viewed more than 25 million times and seen by an estimated 250 million people in over 150 countries. His 2006 talk is the most viewed in TED’s history. In 2011 he was listed as “one of the world’s elite thinkers on creativity and innovation” by Fast Company magazine, and was ranked among the Thinkers50 list of the world’s top business thought leaders.

sir ken robinson
The Importance of Creativity

Is our educational system diminishing the individuality and creativity of its students? Sir Ken Robinson seems to think so! He believes we are providing an education for a future that we cannot grasps and feels that creativity should be as importance as literacy. Students should be praised for being different and thinking on their own, rather than being judged and grouped together based on standardized testing. I feel that I have a good understanding of the purpose of standardized testing; I also feel Sir Robinson has a point that creativity should be allowed to flourish, not be suppressed.

In his video, “The Importance of Creativity”, Sir Robinson shares a story about a woman who when she was a child in the 30’s, the educational system wrote a letter to her mother and suggested she had a learning disability because she could not concentrate and was extremely fidgety. Her mother took her to a specialist only to find out that she did not have a learning disability but rather was a brilliant mind that liked to dance and had to be moving to think. She became a very successful dancer who made a large fortune because of her creative ability to dance. More so today, doctors and specialist are quick to medicate children that are perceived to have a learning disability. Sadly enough, often times it is the parents who are requesting the medications because they do not understand nor have taken the time to get to know their children well enough and therefore become frustrated and no longer want to deal with a “hyper” child. I understand that there are some children who truly need to be on medications, but I tend to believe that there are alternatives to medications, such as specialized diets that limit the sugar and food coloring intake by children. There is no telling how many other brilliant minds doctors have suppressed for one reason or another. Ultimately it is the responsibility of the parents to make these types of decisions, but as an educator we should see each child’s individual potential and educate their “whole” being.

Another point that Sir Robinson mentions is how students are taught that making mistakes is the absolute worst possible thing. Now, I realize there are many different levels of “mistakes” and I’m certain he is referring to the low level, non-criminal sort of mistakes. We have to be cautious to not demean our students, but rather turn a mistake into a learning lesson. If students stay in constant fear of making a mistake, and therefore never make mistakes, how will they deal with the real world where it is inevitable that mistakes will be made? Students should feel comfortable and confident enough to know that when they do make a mistake that the right thing to do is to take responsibility for it, reflect on the issue, apologize if necessary and move forward. To simply state it, "If you are not prepared to be wrong, you’ll never come up with anything original” – Sir Ken Robinson

In my opinion, creativity plays a huge role in our students and who they will become. Each student is different and has different potential. It is our job as future educators to help find that potential and to see to it that each and every student grows and develops into someone who is smart, well-rounded, confident and eager to grow themselves.

Author: Hilliary Sanders

sir ken robinson
Changing Education Paradigms

In his video, "Changing Education Paradigms", Sir Ken Robinson asks the question, “How do we educate our children to take their place in the economies of the 21st century? Given that we cannot anticipate what the economy will look like next week”.

I enjoyed this video very much. It opened up my eyes to how public education became what it is today. It is truly amazing at how much has changed over the years. They were trying to alienate the past and move on quickly to the future. The problem with this, is that it is alienating the students, and making them not want to even be in school. If you look at a few years back, people were to be educated from kindergarten to senior year, go to college, and get a career. This is the routine that has always happened, and now our kids do not believe this. The current system was designed and conceived for a different age.It was conceived in the intellectual culture of the enlightenment and in economic circumstance of the industrial revolution. These students are defined by academic and non academic categories. They believe that if they do not make good grades then they are not smart. So they are prescribed medications to calm them down. We are giving our students drugs to get them focused, and this is not the answer. We should be waking them up to what they have inside of themselves. Ringing bells, divided subjects, age group, etc it is the same routine in every school but Sir Robinson asks why? Why put them together based on age?

Divergent Thinking is not Creativity, it is not a synonym; its the ability to see a lot of possibilities to a question. To be able to see multiple answers not just one. Divergent thinking is a great idea, it really involves the child creative wise, not just memorization. Sir Robinson tells a story about 1500 kindergarten children , who were given a test to measure divergent thinking. 98 percent of the children were put in the genus level. They continued giving this test to children as they got older, and the more students failed it. It really shows that as we get older our imagination and creativity with learning slowly fades. It really shows how students are learning and retaining information in the classroom daily. It really opens your eyes up to how it is going to be when i become a teacher.

Author: Claire Williams

sir ken robinson
How to Escape Education's Death Valley

I couldn’t help but laugh as I started watching Sir Ken Robinson's video, "How to Escape Educations Death Valley". Sir Robinson made the most valid points about today's educational system in a light, humorous, and very informative manner. Sir Robinson believes that there are 3 principles that the human mind flourish from.

The 3 Principles are:

1. Human beings are naturally different and diverse: Sir Robinson stated that NCLB is focused on conformity instead of diversity. While math and science are necessities, a good and sufficient education gives equal attention to each and every content area. Students will forever be different and it is important to celebrate each child's talents and allow them to excel.

2. Curiosity: Once a teacher sparks the curiosity in a student, they will learn without any further assistance. Sir Robinson believes that a great teacher passes on information but also provoke, stimulate, evoke, and mentor students. If there is no active learning happening in the classroom, there is no education. Teachers must peak students interest and really show them how to learn as opposed to focusing on testing.

3. Human life is inherently creative: Sir Robinson believes that one of educations roles is to awaken and develop students power of creativity. With all of the standardized testing being used, it is safe to say that education has been geared towards testing instead of using standardized tests to help students.

Moreover, Sir Robinson believes that leaders, namely teachers, should create a climate of possibility. It all starts with a great teacher that motivates, and encourages true learning and understanding to take place. For now, education appears to be in its own death valley but, education just needs a revolution.

Author: Lauren Patterson

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BP Twelve - Collaborative Assignment


  1. I loved reading this post. You did an excellent job with organization and the amount of information posted. I really enjoyed doing this assignment. I learned that being creative and collaborative is actually a good thing. I guess I didn't realize that teaching is moving into a project based type of education and a collaborative type too. Keep up the good work! :)

  2. Hilliary, your portion of the post was very good! I did see a few typos, though, so be sure to proofread before you publish!

  3. Thanks Sarah! This class has certainly opened my eyes to the new teaching methods as well.