Sir Ken Robinson – The Element

I just finished reading Sir Ken Robinson’s The Element.  It’s an excellent book.

‘The Element’ is where passion intersects with ability.  The book explores how and why some people find their element and why others don’t.  It’s a reflection on intelligence, creativity, education, mentors and much more.

Education should be helping people find and explore their element.  Instead, it’s mostly causing people to steer away from it.  There are many reasons for this; most of them come from our misconceptions about intelligence and creativity.

One example is subject hierarchy; the arts are always bottom priority.  Someone who has an interest in dance may not find his/her element because the system doesn’t properly support it.

Side Note: Interestingly, I find that advocates of the arts use economic reasoning to combat funding cuts and the like.  It seems this is how they level the playing field.  Here’s an article on the ‘creative economy.’ What do you think?

One of my favourite quotes in the book:

“…intellectual growth and creativity come through embracing the dynamic nature of intelligence.  Growth comes through analogy, through seeing how things connect rather than only seeing how they might be different.”

Here’s a neat video that demonstrates this exactly:

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