October 6, 2005
President of the International Federation of Inventors Association, Dr. Farag Moussa believes there are issues keeping young people from being more creative. At the top of his list ( found at http://www.invention-ifia.ch/Youth_PromotionCreativity.htm) are certain environmental factors and the American educational system.
One aspect of a child’s environment, which usually goes unnoticed, is over-stimulation in the classroom. Posters, drawings, fluorescent lights, maps, assorted supplies, animals and people fill traditional learning spaces. While they are necessary tools for education, so many objects could prove be over-stimulating. It is more difficult to clear your mind and brainstorm new ideas when there is so much clutter. This clutter is a true roadblock to childhood creativity.
American educational systems are another issue. Moussa believes that students who explore their creative sides are not always rewarded, and are sometimes considered a disruption and I agree. In a society increasingly focused on standardized tests and memorization, children that think creatively have a challenging time learning in mainstream classrooms. But to correct this pattern would be problematic, as evaluating the creative process is subjective and challenging.
How can these roadblocks to childhood creativity be removed while maintaining the level of education children are accustomed to? Making classrooms stark white, and eliminating formal testing is unrealistic, but what can be done?
- Erin [erin.canty@brainreactions]
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