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In this TED talk, Sir Ken Robinson outlines 3 principles crucial for the human mind to flourish, and how our current education culture works against them.

Please take the 20 minutes to watch this enlightening and funny, oration about “How to get out of the educational ‘death valley’ we now face” it is absolutely worth it.

Ken Robinson’s 3 principles and imperatives to allow the human mind to flourish:


  1. Humans are naturally different and diverse. The No Child Left Behind program is a great initiative but the heavy focus on teaching to the test makes it more about conformity.
  2. Curiosity makes us learn almost without further assistance. The difficult job for teachers is not to teach, but to facilitate learning. (Standardized) testing is OK to measure outcomes, but should not obstruct learning.
  3. Humans are inherently creative. But we are currently stuck in a paradigm of standardization, killing our creativity.


  1. We must individualize teaching and learning.
  2. We must attribute a high status to the teaching profession, and see teachers professional development as an investment, not a cost.
  3. We must make schools responsible and autonomous to get the job done. Centralized decision making is not the way. A mode of command and control in education is not the solution.

The role of leadership, then, is creating a climate of opportunity.

” There’s a wonderful quote from Benjamin Franklin. “There are three sorts of people in the world: Those who are immovable, people who don’t get, they don’t want to get it, they’re going to do anything about it. There are people who are movable, people who see the need for change and are prepared to listen to it. And there are people who move, people who make things happen.” And if we can encourage more people, that will be a movement. And if the movement is strong enough, that’s, in the best sense of the word, a revolution. And that’s what we need.”

how to escape educations death valley

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