A New Education Revolution

by Alyssa Novak

On Tuesday afternoon I attended the NCSL General Session entitled, A New Education Revolution, with keynote speaker Sir Ken Robinson.

Sir Ken Robinson’s talk was preceded by a conference welcome from representatives of the Minnesota Legislature, Senate President Sandra Pappas and House Speaker Paul Thissen, and Minneapolis Mayor Betsy Hodges, as well as a special video welcome message from Garrison Keillor of A Prairie Home Companion.

Photo of NCSL opening session

Minnesota Senate President Sandra Pappas and Minnesota House Speaker Paul Thissen welcoming NCSL Summit Attendees to Minnesota

Photo of Garrison Keillor on video screen

Special video welcome message from Garrison Keillor

Sir Ken Robinson, an expert in creativity and education, is widely known for his TEDTalk, “Do schools kill creativity?”

Photo of Sir Ken Robinson

Sir Ken Robinson during NCSL General Session

In his dry and humorous style, Robinson prodded the audience to consider how and why children grow out of creativity. He pointed out that children are quick to identify themselves as creative, whereas adults rarely do. He hypothesized that the structure of the current educational system may be a factor that contributes to this societal problem.

Robinson shared the following video with the audience as a prime example of how educational systems can unintentionally squash kids’ natural creativity:

Throughout the session, Robinson succeeded in having the entire audience in stitches, while simultaneously inspiring them to think critically about issues in today’s educational systems.

During the talk, Robinson also shamelessly plugged the latest edition of his book, Out of Our Minds: Learning to be Creative.

I will definitely be adding it to my long list of books to check out!

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