Time to give singing and dancing the same educational credit as mathematics and language – a whole body education
I believe it’s time to give our children a Whole Body Education. As Sir Ken Robinson says in this amazing TED talk “Do schools kill creativity?” (view right) we have no idea how the future is going to play out.
However I do believe that we have plenty of resources at our fingertips to improve the chances for our children using creativity as the key and more specifically, whole body learning and a whole body education as represented by the arts, sport and any other creative pursuit we can all think of.
As Sir Ken so aptly points out
“All kids have tremendous talents, and we squander them…pretty ruthlessly…my contention is that creativity is as important in education now as literacy and we should treat it with the same status.”
Where the mainstream education system has let our children down and not given them a Whole Body Education or the chance to experience whole body learning
My experience of education was in the UK school system which at the time was using a policy of ‘streaming’…that is, kids that showed intellectual prowess in one or more areas were put in a ‘higher’ stream and given more subject matter to learn.
So what that meant for me was the opportunity to take 9 ‘O’ Levels by the age of 16, I took 2 a year early (English Language and Art) and then was ready to start choosing more subjects to take me towards University (chose not to go in the end).
But despite having all these opportunities and a fair bit of perceived talent – I didn’t test well or do ‘exams’ well so got fairly average results.
It wasn’t until several years later (and a few different careers later) that I figured out what was missing for me and many others. We weren’t getting a Whole Body Education or whole body learning.
Most education systems involve us sitting still and watching and listening and then taking notes. This, in fact, is only a useful learning style for about 15% of the population. (Carla Hannaford Ph.D.)
The other 85% are lacking the inputs from learning technologies which have been available for many years and therefore get one chance learning instead of whole body learning.
Educational tools for a Whole Body Education have been around for years – and not been used in the mainstream
I have had an epiphany about how my lack of a whole body education did not serve me well over several years…starting with a process where as an IT Trainer I needed to teach accountants how to use spreadsheets.
Mathematics, Maths (as we say in the UK) or Math as is said in the US was always a problem subject for me.
As a young student it involved several boxes of tissues over more complex problems that I just couldn’t seem to get into my head (despite the fact that my frustrated Production Engineer of a dad taught maths and physics at night school), he couldn’t ‘fix’ my problems either.
So, as an adult I started work on creating a course for these accountants…and everything flowed beautifully.
In later years with my involvement in the application of Accelerated Learning in adult business training I realized why…I’m a strong visual learner and I need to problems broken down into their visual components and then forming a whole…then I get it!
I believe it’s fairly easy to provide children with a whole body education – I’ve done it in successfully business with a partner without a college/university degree!
I was fortunate enough to work with a creative business partner – together we figured out how to apply Accelerated Learning Techniques and NLP™ (Neuro-Linguistic Programming) into adult learning programs to accelerate results.
We created courses which enabled adults to learn fairly dry subjects such as keyboard skills and computer training in a fun manner, with movement, music and laughter as part of the process. For more, see Oddball Training Ltd.
These tools are not new yet yield great results. If two business people who DIDN’T go to university/college can figure this out, then I’m sure those focusing their lives on creating effective educational systems can.