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Creativity and conformity in Education
April 13, 2020
What is conformity in education
It is the strive to fit in and in this competitive world where education is headed in the direction of a corporate world of competitiveness we go to great lengths to align our actions with those around us whom we use as exemplars. We need to change this and make space for creativity in the classroom and teachers align with the ideology of the school where creativity is the norm. The challenge here is that there is lack of societal praise for non-conformity and there does not exist successful models of non-conformity in a society that depends on working using exemplars. If examined closely conformity is the reapplication of tried and tested solutions from the past combined with powerful control. The need of the hour is to bring out or unleash the potential of creative genius to make learning as naturalist as possible.
In today’s era demanding conformity from students results in a loss of freedom that will hinder creativity and the first evil to be taken care of is the obsession for comparisons of grades. This exists at every level in society and schools fall into this trap. Grades have become the soul of teaching. It is so blended in our system that most of us cannot visualize a system without it. We are yet to realise that the existing numerical representation for grading enforces conformity and thus destroys thinking.
Slow but steady steps need to be takeIn today’s era demanding conformity from students results in a loss of freedom that will hinder creativity and the first evil to be taken care of is the obsession for comparisons of grades. This exists at every level in society and schools fall into this trap. Grades have become the soul of teaching. It is so blended in our system that most of us cannot visualize a system without it. We are yet to realise that the existing numerical representation for grading enforces conformity and thus destroys thinking.n to rectify this. We could begin with the third teacher – the classroom environment. This can be done by creating an empowering environment in every classroom by changing the physical conformity. Reimagining the space and design the classroom to make it a creative thinking space by keeping in mind the interests of the students. The space of a classroom, its furniture, the colour of its walls, windows and the amount of light not only influence students’ learning but also the pace of learning. These spaces should be such that students can connect learn through collaboration. Every class has different needs, there each teacher should be given the freedom to redesign based on learner requirements.
Secondly, forcing students to follow to rules creates feelings of resentment and pushes them to negative behaviour, and the cascading impact is on the academics. Therefore, instead of forcing, bring the student to come up with the essential agreements that makes space for their needs. Their opinion in formulating these essential agreements should be taken. Allow them to set the consequences for the non-compliance. There is enough evidence that indicates that children are more likely to follow agreements that have been set in consultations because it is reasonable and it was set by them.
We need adaptation, critical thinking, creative thinking, building of values of empathy which will lead this generation towards becoming innovative minded an essential 21st century skill.
Creativity is the nurturing and igniting of a human talent and abilities to the fullest potential. It is original and imaginative thinking.
In a creative educational system, the human abilities and talents are unlocked to its fullest potential and encourages both cognitive and original expressions. It develops the body, mind and spirit and the learning outcomes is higher-order thinking skills, creativity, problem-solving ability, self-awareness and triggering artistic senses. In a creative classrooms, the teacher and students are both equal participants in the learning process and this is done by taking into account the diversity of learning styles and needs. Learning should be integrated with performing arts and creative art Building persuasive communication through panel discussions, debates is another 21st century skill that should be built and encouraged.
Assessment measure a very narrow range of abilities. They should lend to critical thinking and build intrinsic motivation. We should think about flexibility and relevance with the scope for self-assessments. It should encourage students to raise questions, probe, and think out of the box.