The Importance of Creativity in Education

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Creativity is important in an educational platform—because it is important in business (and life); it gives you the opportunity to find creative solutions…even to solutions that could be thought of as black and white.

Creativity is simply ‘thinking outside the box’. Below we’ll discuss why creativity is critical, why it has incredible value to individuals in terms of opportunity, self-improvement, communication, connection, why it is important for companies/employers, and the difference between STEM and STEAM educational platforms.

The Importance of Creativity

The most-watched TED Talk of all time is still (after a decade!) Sir Ken Robinson’s presentation about ‘Do schools kill creativity?’. Educators, parents, and employers have been watching it in spades because it brings up solid points. This article isn’t going to summarize his TED Talk, but check it out to learn more about the importance of creativity. Creativity is critical to learning and talks like this are important to the discussion of creativity in education.

From a business perspective, IBM did an interesting study of about 1,500 CEOs from over 60 countries and over 30 different fields. What they found was that companies were looking for creative thinkers. Creative thinkers were not only valued, but these executives thought it should be be taught in schools. The reason they value creativity in education is because it can help their new hires (which become their teams) adapt better to the changing work environment. The ‘soft skill’ of creativity according to the study and these execs means that those employees can adapt more easily to changing shifts in industry. Shifts that will help their enterprises stay relevant.

The Value in Teaching and Embracing Creativity

If everyone thought and learned in the same ways and created the same outcomes, the world—including business world—wouldn’t grow and evolve. The stereotypical creative fields, like the arts, wouldn’t exist (so no music, TV, movies…and EEK Netflix!) without creativity. It fosters empathy, emotional connection and communication.  It also empowers individuals to adapt to future opportunities—and it begins with the right learning platform and educational tools.

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Future Opportunities and Adaptability

Many of us know from our personal timelines that career trajectories don’t go from A to B to C in a straight and linear line.

Creativity is incredibly important to career growth. For example, let’s say that you’re a software engineer (which despite being a fairly binary-type career requires creative zigs and zags for solutions to the software you’re working on), you may think that your career will go from entry-level to mid-level to project manager to overall manager up to an executive-type position.

With creative thinking however you may create a side project that turns into a new business, or you solve problems in creative ways that get you noticed from the ‘powers that be’ and you are promoted quicker, or you may opt for a startup instead of a higher-paying/higher-stability job at an established company and your career grows significantly faster and in different ways. Thinking from a pure equation form of thinking (if I do A and B I’ll get to C) can be limiting in your growth.

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The Opportunity to Fail (Forward)

If students and employees only see a hammer and a nail then there’s one solution, and one that limits learning and growth. You’re the hammer, you hit the nail and that’s all there is when it comes to learning platforms.

Creativity when it is taught—and fostered—offers you the opportunity to try new options. And sometimes you will fail. Elon Musk says that if you aren’t failing—then you aren’t innovating enough. In his incredibly forward-thinking (and successful!) companies, there is an atmosphere for failure…and if you follow his ground-breaking companies, that culture has created incredible leaps and bounds forwards. His first few reusable rockets failed, but then succeeded—and has made Space X the top company on the planet in rocket engineering.

Teaching creativity offers the opportunity to fail. Sometimes you simply fail, but in the best moments, you’re failing forward.

STEM vs STEAM

A STEM education platform is learning science, technology, engineering, and math. STEM careers are burgeoning and have never been more important than they are right now as our society continues to need better and better tech. There is zero doubt that STEM teaching is not only incredibly valuable to our society as companies hiring STEM graduates can’t find candidates fast enough.

Many companies have to look abroad for new hires, to find well educated and trained candidates…due to a lack of enough candidates in the local pool. STEM graduates are highly sought after. STEAM however adds another dimension to STEM.

"STEAM adds another dimension to STEM"

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FAME

As you’ve figured out via basic spelling, STEAM is STEM with an A…and the A stands for arts. That art element includes a number of disciplines, but importantly: design. Some STEM professionals believe that adding arts into the mix reduces the focus on the scientific method and mathematics and such…however, the creativity added by the art portion can naturally complement those disciplines. This is especially true in terms of innovation, which requires outside-the-box type creative thinking. And the arts/creative side is what the companies in the IBM study are looking for.

If you are one of those curious minds looking for STEAM online courses, check out FAME educational platform. FAME has over 200 courses in Arts and Technology for beginners and experienced students of all ages. We here at FAME truly believe in the transformative power of creativity—especially when used alongside a STEM type educational platform. Creativity should be taught across all disciplines, however, not all courses offer creativity-building courses, which is why a supplementary course based in creativity can be critical to not only expanding your personal growth but professional as well.

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