Comments on: Are kids getting less creative? A slice of lime in the soda Sun, 26 Oct 2014 19:05:02 +0000 hourly 1 By: rjs0 Tue, 13 Jul 2010 22:56:35 +0000 you’re all in denial

By: drewbie Tue, 13 Jul 2010 19:25:47 +0000 I’ve seen what’s popular on TV, in movies, and at the bookstores.

I’m easily swayed to believe creativity is on the decline.

By: timothyogden Tue, 13 Jul 2010 18:43:21 +0000 1) I don’t think its necessary to show that creativity development has declined in schools. Creativity development could have been something happening entirely in the home, which may not now be happening (I don’t agree that this is the case). One way to address that would be to bring creativity development into schools.

2) What would be far more compelling evidence, in my mind, is that similar declines are being seen in other countries with similar demographics and child behaviors. TV watching, video game playing and internet time wasting a cross-national trends. Are Canadian, British, French, and Swedish children also becoming less creative?

3) Even if 2 were true, still the most compelling explanation would be that the test is outdated, not that human capacity for creativity is declining.

By: HBC Tue, 13 Jul 2010 18:21:28 +0000 If there’s such a thing as a good way of measuring creativity in children, I have yet to figure out what it might be.

By: Curmudgeon Tue, 13 Jul 2010 16:43:17 +0000 Po Bronson . . . I always wondered where really awful chroniclers of the dotcom boom went when their fifteen minutes of fame ended.

By: hsvkitty Tue, 13 Jul 2010 16:36:58 +0000 here are so many studies to find out what the problems are, but the studies will find what is already evident. A lot of the problems are also related to the those in test scores, which are the bread and butter for schools trying to keep up to get funding.

Rest assured doncoop above is correct. There is less imagination play, creative workshops, art, FUN and frivolity, music, which makes the brain active and keeps the blood flowing through the brain. Any children who are over active are not allowed to move, they are medicated and mind numbed. If children have a talent who is going to discover it and then Nurture it? Not even the child can if it becomes rote education numbing creative minds.

I will add some observation, and although I am Canadian, I know that many US schools are following the same paths. There is decreased focus on activity and Physical education (Even though it has been proven children who are active increase blood flow to the brain)

Poor nutrition in schools and at home (the food industry is to blame for processing the hell out of everything and fresh produce has too many toxins… bad for brain.
There was nary a tuna or salmon sandwich, which is known brain food, in sight due to allergies of one student. Ditto peanut butter, which would at least be nutritious. That makes for sluggish brains.)

A simple thing like having a water fountain near each group of 4 classrooms (The plastic scare meant parents aren’t sending in bottles of water, but are now sending sugar canned drinks. Less brain activity and increases risk of obesity and those problems we are seeing)

Less time outside playing at home and at school (TV is known to be a flat liner for brain activity. Less sunshine means less vitamin D, vital for brain and body function, fresh air and oxygen for the brain )

Even more parents are working or trying to find work. That means there is stress at home. Children can also feel depressed. Less time or energy left for the children, less thought to the child reading, playing, making play dates, helping them before school or with learning, less thought to nutrition and lunches. What I have seen in snacks and lunches is prepackaged sugar, carbs and junk as even the ‘food’ is processed with chemicals, as that is easy to pack and less time to ‘prepare.’ That will get worse as money gets tighter, people lose homes, money gets tighter.

The teachers are stressed. Teachers are burned out with time and curriculum constrants. (need I say more?)

The demands on the teacher mean they have no time to nurture creativity. It is also VERY likely that teachers who are kind and nurturing and who might be more inclined to discover the talents and creativity are bypassed for those teacher more inclined to strictness and academics.

So yes, the video games are a great target, and I am sure there will be 10 years of studies that will come up with the things I have thought of off the top of my head. Ask teachers, parents and kids and we will be happy to tell you why the scores are lower. All children have the capacity for innovation, have unrecognized creativity and talents. But, the curriculum doesn’t allow for recognizing or nurturing it.

Bottom line, everyone should be interested in education and not just teachers and hopefully it won’t take 10 years to see that the education system is being designed to stifle creativity, exercise, fun, learning how to succeed after failure and if you bring that back, …. creativity will return.

By: TFF Tue, 13 Jul 2010 15:40:52 +0000 The key aspect of creativity is the mental flexibility to meet new problems with new solutions. This is in direct conflict with modern “standards based” educational practice in which the emphasis is on severely constrained objectives. I wouldn’t put the blame wholly on “No Child Left Behind” as we’ve been moving in this direction in education for at least fifteen years.

In the strongest form of education, you give students a problem and help walk them through one or more approaches to solve the problem. Along the way you discuss the logic guiding the solution, focusing always on the process.

Unfortunately you don’t see much of that these days, nor are most students prepared to learn with this approach.

By: doncoop Tue, 13 Jul 2010 14:57:36 +0000 I certainly agree with your caveats about the difficulty of quantizing creativity. But my school-teacher wife tells me that the influence of No Child Left Behind has been to make test-taking so important that teaching to the test has replaced many activities that would enhance creativity. Teaching children how to take multiple-choice exams does not help them be creative, and that is how the new incentives are structured. Any discussion of teaching creativity should include the influence of NCLB.