How do we promote creativity in schools? This is one of the prevailing concerns of many progressive education reformers. From a long-term fiscal perspective, creativity can lead to innovation, and for the U.S. to have a competitive edge in the global economy, minds capable of identifying problems and imagining new possibilities are a necessity. But given the constructs of public schools, can creativity truly be valued?
Universities say they're looking for students who are engaged citizens and independent thinkers with a desire to be a part of the school’s community. But many of the measures used to determine college admission don’t test for those qualities. Instead, colleges look at SAT or ACT test scores, the number of Advanced Placement classes a student has completed, GPAs and the ability to write a strong essay. There is often a disconnect between the kind of student colleges say they want and what students have to do to be admitted.
Increasingly, educators are looking to research about how kids learn to influence teaching practices and tools. What seemed like on-the-fringe experiments, like game-based learning, have turned into real trends, and have gradually made their way into many (though certainly not most) classrooms.