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Friday 31st July 2015

posted 30 Jul 2015, 18:43 by Carolyn Brett
In what is possibly the most viewed TED TALK ever, "Are Schools Killing Creativity?", our hero, Sir Ken Robinson, discusses how people have discovered their talent.

I've been thinking this a lot lately, especially when he gives an anecdote about a small child going to school in the 1930s. This girl had difficulty focussing, fidgets continuously, was creating a disturbance  and clearly wasn't 'achieving'. Her mother took her to a specialist as she obviously had something 'wrong'. The specialist and the mother left the room for a while and left the radio going… the child could not stop moving to the music.... "You daughter is not sick… she is a dancer!" The mother thankfully enrolled her in a dance school… which was jam packed of people who also needed to move!

This child was the famous choreographer - Dame Gillian Lynne of Cats and Phantom of the Opera fame.

You can listen to the clip here:

We must be observant, we must slow things down, we must together, parents and teachers, take the time to recognise a spark in our children. Then we have to ignite it… not 
dampen it or put it out altogether. We have a window of opportunity.

You will recall me discussing the concept of flow a few weeks back. You can find a memory jog here:


Let's aim to support children to experience flow… by doing so, we may also uncover a passion, a talent, a strength. In the introductory section to Sir Ken's latest book, 'The Element', he says:

..."We need to make sure that all people have the chance to do what they should be doing, to discover the Element in themselves and in their own way… understanding the conditions under which human talents will flourish or fade. It’s about how we can all engage more fully in the present, and how we can prepare in the only possible way for a completely unknowable future. To make the best of ourselves and of each other, we urgently need to embrace a richer conception of human capacity. We need to embrace the Element."

So, let's walk around with our eyes wide open and support our children, staff and each other to make the best of ourselves.

Look forward to seeing you at the Parent Workshop with Mark Osborne in Tautoru, Tuesday 4 August at 6.30 pm sharp to start.