Author 241290

Robinson, fully Sir Kenneth Robinson

English Author, Speaker, International Advisor on Education and Educator, Director of The Arts in Schools Project

Author Quotes

Divergent thinking isn?t the same thing as creativity. I define creativity as the process of having original ideas that have value. Divergent thinking isn?t a synonym but is an essential capacity for creativity. It?s the ability to see lots of possible answers to a question, lots of possible ways to interpret a question, to think laterally, to think not just in linear or convergent ways, to see multiple answers, not one.

In our culture, not to know is to be at fault socially? People pretend to know lots of things they don?t know. Because the worst thing to do is appear to be uninformed about something, to not have an opinion? We should know the limits of our knowledge and understand what we don?t know, and be willing to explore things we don?t know without feeling embarrassed of not knowing about them.

It?s not enough to be good at something to be in your element? We?re being brought up with this idea that life is linear. This is an idea that?s perpetuated when you come to write your CV ? that you set out your life in a series of dates and achievements, in a linear way, as if your whole existence has progressed in an ordered, structured way, to bring you to this current interview.

We have a system of education that is modeled on the interest of industrialism and in the image of it. School are still pretty much organized on factory lines ? ringing bells, separate facilities, specialized into separate subjects. We still educate children by batches.

If you're not prepared to be wrong, you'll never come up with anything original.

Imagination is the source of every form of human achievement. And it's the one thing that I believe we are systematically jeopardizing in the way we educate our children and ourselves.

Make the most of whatever it is that floats your boat...

Our task is to educate their (our students) whole being so they can face the future. We may not see the future, but they will and our job is to help them make something of it.

Suddenly degrees aren't worth anything. Isn't that true? When I was a student, if you had a degree, you had a job. If you didn't have a job it's because you didn't want one. And I didn't want one, frankly.

The arts especially address the idea of aesthetic experience. An aesthetic experience is one in which your senses are operating at their peak; when you’re present in the current moment; when you’re resonating with the excitement of this thing that you’re experiencing; when you are fully alive.

The fact is that given the challenges we face, education doesn't need to be reformed -- it needs to be transformed. The key to this transformation is not to standardize education, but to personalize it, to build achievement on discovering the individual talents of each child, to put students in an environment where they want to learn and where they can naturally discover their true passions.

We have sold ourselves into a fast food model of education, and it's impoverishing our spirit and our energies as much as fast food is depleting our physical bodies.

We have to go from what is essentially an industrial model of education, a manufacturing model, which is based on linearity and conformity and batching people. We have to move to a model that is based more on principles of agriculture. We have to recognize that human flourishing is not a mechanical process; it's an organic process. And you cannot predict the outcome of human development. All you can do, like a farmer, is create the conditions under which they will begin to flourish.

Creativity is as important as literacy.

When my son, James, was doing homework for school, he would have five or six windows open on his computer, Instant Messenger was flashing continuously, his cell phone was constantly ringing, and he was downloading music and watching the TV over his shoulder. I don’t know if he was doing any homework, but he was running an empire as far as I could see, so I didn’t really care.

Creativity is the process of having original ideas that have value.

Creativity now is as important as literacy, and we should treat it with the same status.

Human resources are like natural resources; they're often buried deep. You have to go looking for them, they're not just lying around on the surface. You have to create the circumstances where they show themselves.

I asked a professor of nanotechnology what they use to measure the unthinkable small distances of nanospace? He said it was the nanometre. This didn't help me very much. A nanometre is a billionth of a metre. I understood the idea but couldn't visualise what it meant. I said, What is it roughly? He thought for a moment and said, A nanometre is roughly the distance that a man's beard grows in one second. I had never thought about what beards do in a second but they must do something. It takes them all day to grow about a milllimetre. They don't leap out of your face at eight o'clock in the morning. Beards are slow, languid things and our language reflects this. We do not say as quick as a beard or as fast as a bristle. We now have a way of grasping of how slow they are - about a nanometre a second.

I believe our only hope for the future is to adopt a new conception of human ecology, one in which we start to reconstitute our concept of the richness in human capacity.

I like university professors, but you know, we shouldn't hold them up as the high-water mark of all human achievement. They're just a form of life, another form of life.

Life is not linear; it's organic. We create our lives symbiotically as we explore our talents in relation to circumstances they help create for us.

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Robinson, fully Sir Kenneth Robinson
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English Author, Speaker, International Advisor on Education and Educator, Director of The Arts in Schools Project