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Creative Schools summary

Ken Robinson and Lou Aronica

Revolutionizing Education from the Ground Up

4.5 (169 ratings)
17 mins

Brief summary

"Creative Schools" by Ken Robinson and Lou Aronica highlights the importance of transforming education into a more creative and personalized process to prepare students for the future. It looks into the flaws of the current education system and suggests practical solutions to promote creativity, innovation, and individuality in learning.

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    Creative Schools
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    Formal education is shaped by the needs of industry.

    Do you ever wonder how modern schools were first developed? Well, they certainly didn’t originate as a means to foster the unique personality, creativity and talents of individual students. Rather, conventional education was a result of the need to deliver highly standardized knowledge to young people so they could work in factories.

    Modern schools arose over the course of the Industrial Revolution in the eighteenth and nineteenth centuries.

    Before this period in history, only the privileged received any formal education. But this changed as new industries emerged, requiring workers to have some basic skills like the ability to read, do simple math and understand technical information.

    So, Western governments began organizing mass education with one main purpose – to produce useful labor for factories. And, since industrial production relies on conformity, compliance and linear processes, education was based on these needs too. In fact, schools themselves were designed more or less like factories.

    Jump forward to the present day and this tradition is alive and well with the standards movement, which endeavors to make the nation’s workforce internationally competitive by holding education to firm guidelines and standards. At the same time, STEM or science, technology, engineering and math subjects are given preference, regardless of a student’s strengths and interests.

    But where did the standards movement originate?

    It had already begun in the 1980s, but gained prominence in the year 2000, when several Western countries like the United States, the United Kingdom and Germany performed poorly in the first PISA or Program for International Student Assessment test.

    Shocked by their poor results, the countries searched for ways to enhance the performance of their students. But, instead of catering to the needs of individual students, they once again planned education like an efficient factory, setting out exactly what students of a particular grade should learn and how they should learn it – all the while assessing their progress through testing.

    This meant that by ninth grade, for example, all students might need to know basic algebra and be made to prove their ability by taking a nationwide test.

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    What is Creative Schools about?

    Creative Schools (2015) is a guide to transforming education. These blinks break down every aspect of education from its history to the essential needs of students. They also illustrate the ways in which all people can help kids get the schooling they need to succeed in a rapidly transforming world.

    Creative Schools Review

    Creative Schools (2015) by Ken Robinson and Lou Aronica is a thought-provoking exploration of the current education system and how it can be transformed to better serve students and society. Here's what makes this book worth reading:

    • Provides insightful perspectives on the flaws of the traditional education system, challenging readers to rethink the status quo and consider new possibilities.
    • Offers a vision for a creative and inclusive education system that fosters individual talents, promotes critical thinking, and prepares students for the complexities of the modern world.
    • Presents compelling real-life stories and examples of innovative schools and educators who are successfully implementing creative approaches to teaching and learning.

    Best quote from Creative Schools

    Civilization is a race between education and catastrophe.– H. G. Wells

    —Ken Robinson and Lou Aronica
    example alt text

    Who should read Creative Schools?

    • Teachers, students and parents
    • Anyone interested in education
    • Anyone who wants a new way of teaching that truly prepares kids for the big challenges to come

    About the Author

    Ken Robinson is a writer, international speaker and education advisor. He’s taught pedagogy at the University of Warwick and advised the UK government on arts in schools. In 2006, he delivered TED’s most-watched presentation ever: “How Schools Kill Creativity.”

    Lou Aronica is an American editor and publisher who’s written four novels and is the co-author of several works of nonfiction.

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    Creative Schools FAQs 

    What is the main message of Creative Schools?

    The main message of Creative Schools is that the current education system needs to prioritize creativity and individuality in order to better prepare students for the future.

    How long does it take to read Creative Schools?

    The reading time for Creative Schools can vary, but it generally takes several hours. However, the Blinkist summary can be read in just 15 minutes.

    Is Creative Schools a good book? Is it worth reading?

    Creative Schools is a valuable read for anyone interested in education. It offers insightful perspectives and practical ideas for improving our education system.

    Who is the author of Creative Schools?

    The authors of Creative Schools are Ken Robinson and Lou Aronica.

    What to read after Creative Schools?

    If you're wondering what to read next after Creative Schools, here are some recommendations we suggest:
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