I was watching the TED Talk: Do schools kill creativity?
I must say that I felt inspired to write about it, because I caught myself thinking about how teachers have been teaching their students and how this teaching is affecting their creativity. I am not a regular school teacher, I am an English teacher, teaching at a private school, and sometimes people ask, “Do you really have to bother about this kind of matter?”
Yes, I do. Despite of what I am or what I am not, I am an educator and this implies (or at least should) that I care about my students, even though many teachers consider teaching “just a job”, I am the kind of teacher who is willing to learn more, and try different things to give a better class.
But going back to this discussion, I thought it was simply amazing what he said about schools. Do you remember yourself at the time you were a kid? What were your favorite subjects? You perhaps answered Arts, Music and Physical Education. Do you remember people saying that you shouldn´t take this subjects into consideration because you wouldn´t have a future? Maybe to be a musician is a perfect job for someone, so instead of pushing people away from their dreams, schools should be able to recognize students’ abilities and invest on what they truly like to do.
As in my field of knowledge, I am constantly trying new games, art activities and projects to motivate students. Some of them don´t like English, and it is my job to make learning more fun and desirable.
Something that really caught my attention was when he talked about mistakes. We are suffocating children by not letting them learn from their own mistakes. How serious is this? Pretty much I would say. So we have to enable a environment for them to be able to mistake and learn from it. Some kids are so afraid of making mistakes that they don´t even try. We have to let them know that they can trust us and we will not judge them from their mistakes. It is simple as putting yourself on their shoes. Would you like to feel embarrassed in front of a class, just because you don´t know something? Well, students don’t like either. Teachers have to be reliable, and students have to create this bond with teachers to have a healthy learning.
So I think it is worth to watch this ted talk at http://www.ted.com and rethink about how you are teaching your students. Are you killing their creativity?