Pablo Picasso famously said, "every child is an artist, but the problem is how to remain an artist once you grow up." This is an important statement for us and one that guides a lot of the work we do. You see every single one us has experienced creativity as a child in its purest form. Unfortunately, this experience has become a distant memory that has faded and even forgotten. It is our job to awaken it, slap it's cheeks and breathe some life into it.
Designing an educational experience also needs to build in contagious creativity. What I mean by this is creating an experience you want to do again and again. It's an experience that lets off all those wonderful chemicals that make you feel good and signal to your brain, 'Hey, I like how this feels. I want some more!"
I believe we over complicate seeking creativity. In our line of work I witness the constant need to seek external approval when coming up with new ideas or designing a new entity. It's always "what is Google doing?" or "we should follow Finland." I'm more inclined to promote looking within or at least looking around your locality. The answers are there.
A book that inspired me is 'In the Early World, by Elwyn S Richardson" Published in 1964, the book focuses on the inherent creative capabilities of all children. Elwyn Richardson and his small rural primary school at Oruaiti in Northland became an international model of progressive education during the 1950s. For me this book confirmed that in a not-too-distant past all the conditions were right for nurturing a child's curiosity. These were days before terms like enquiry-based learning or modern learning environment became commonplace. Let's not over complicate things.
We really don't need to look to externally for inspiration in fostering creative minds. It's about looking around us, looking within and connecting with each other. It's easy to lose the spark and drive of getting creative once we leave childhood behind, but we must reclaim it, for our sakes and for the sake of humanity. I don't want to get all Oprah on you, but as a species, we have got ourselves into a pickle. Creativity will not provide all the answers, but it will certainly have a go.
We'll continue to design experiences that tap into inherent creativity because we know how important it is to the planet, to humanity and to you.