American schoolchildren are becoming less creative

December 2012

Kyung Hee Kim, a professor of education at the College of William and Mary, recently detected a continuous decline in creativity among American schoolchildren over the last two or three decades.

The data indicate that “children have become less emotionally expressive, less energetic, less talkative and verbally expressive, less humorous, less imaginative, less unconventional, less lively and passionate, less perceptive, less apt to connect seemingly irrelevant things, less synthesizing, and less likely to see things from a different angle.” 

According to Kim’s research, all aspects of creativity have declined, but the biggest decline is in the measure called Creative Elaboration, which assesses the ability to take a particular idea and expand on it in an interesting and novel way.

Peter Gray, a research professor of psychology at Boston College, suggests, that the decline is a consequence of our educational system. “For several decades we as a society have been suppressing children’s freedom to ever-greater extents, and now we find that their creativity is declining”, he writes in “The Creativity Post”, a website dedicated to creativity.

Gray continues: “Creativity is nurtured by freedom and stifled by the continuous monitoring, evaluation, adult-direction, and pressure to conform that restrict children’s lives today.  In the real world few questions have one right answer, few problems have one right solution; that’s why creativity is crucial to success in the real world.  But more and more we are subjecting children to an educational system that assumes one right answer to every question and one correct solution to every problem, a system that punishes children (and their teachers too) for daring to try different routes.  We are also increasingly depriving children of free time outside of school to play, explore, be bored, overcome boredom, fail, overcome failure—that is, to do all that they must do in order to develop their full creative potential.”

Read the full article

All news in this category

Teheran: First International Congress on Education and Health

The University of Social Welfare and Rehabilitation Sciences in Tehran organized a congress from 19 to 21 June 2018 with many contributions from... [more]

Hyderabad/India: Waldorf is booming

Waldorf Education is very popular in India – applications to the seven schools and more than 25 kindergartens are constantly increasing. No wonder.  [more]

São Paolo: teacher training center becomes a university

The teacher training center in São Paolo has been around for 40 years. Many Brazilian Waldorf teachers are trained here (sometimes also teachers from... [more]

Domestic report: The Netherlands

The first Waldorf school was founded in 1923 in The Hague. Amsterdam and Zeist followed in 1933. In the 1970s there was a strong growth in the number... [more]

Domestic report: Italy

While the number and distribution of Waldorf Steiner schools and kindergartens in Italy has not changed noticeably in the last years, there has been... [more]

Transforming Ownership to Create a Better Economy

Private ownership of companies drives our economic system but it has also created corporations that put profit above everything else, a divided... [more]

Why write? Penmanship for the 21st Century

What is the future of writing in the digital age, and why does it matter? In this surprising talk, Master Penman Jake Weidmann explores the... [more]

Polyhedric educational experiences

The main focus of this video is the recent development of the upper classes of the Scuola Novalis. The Libera Scuola Steiner-Waldorf “Novalis” is... [more]

Having 28 daughters. Waldorf Education in India

An interview with Manorama Kamineni, Sloka Waldorf School Hyderabad. [more]

Googlification in the Classroom – The High-Tech Invasion of our Schools

The posters on the classroom wall say, ‘Dream!’ ‘Laugh!’ It seems ironic that these posters remind us of a childhood which is long gone. Some third... [more]

Displaying results 1 to 10 out of 120

Page 1

Page 2

Page 3

Page 4

Page 5

Page 6

Page 7

Next >

Follow