What Happened to Creativity


Teaching today is teaching by the numbers. Test scores seem to be  the top priority of all teachers.  When I started teaching school I had a slate chalkboard to use as my learning tool. Some years I taught all the subjects. Creativity was necessary for both teachers and students. With no art teacher, we did our own art. We enjoyed many hands on projects and worked at the pace of the children we were teaching. Today it is a different world. No time for creativity. Everything has to stay on schedule with everyone doing the same thing at the same time. I never understood educators who think that teaching for the test is more important than teaching the child where he is in his learning process.

Whatever Happened to Creativity

A few years back when I taught school

Chalkboard learning was always the rule

Kids had time to play games with their friends

Learning today’s just a means to an end

I taught it all and it was great fun

Art in the classroom and recess to run

Toothpick sculptures covered windows and shelves

Rock collections and fossils all made by themselves

Tempera paints mixed from powder I ordered

Paper Mache lighthouses are chicken wire supported

Marigolds seedlings in a greenhouse by the door

Flowers on the schoolyard at home and much more

Dried seeds collected and planted next year

Strange mutation combinations appear

Creative learning’s no longer the norm

Today it’s computers test scores and dorms

Labeling medicating and grouping to conform

No lagging behind or they’ll be a storm

Teaching the test is a required necessity

Meeting the timeline not matter the ability

If scores don’t add up schools don’t look good

It must be the teacher no matter the hood

So meet the deadlines whatever the cost

Creative learning for now has been lost

Cookie-cutter students all made out of ticky tacky

Taught by hounded teachers who will soon go wacky

No wonder home schooling is such a big hit

Learning in school will give you a fit


Black and White Photo: Dwight L. Roth


28 thoughts on “What Happened to Creativity

  1. Even in my country, school or I can say the entire education system is going for a six. Students today in school are like a horses running in a race. Parents, teachers, relatives everyone wants to the guys to score well. The entire education system is judged on scores. They are running education system like a corporate firm.
    There is hardly any creativity left nowadays. I still remember one teacher of mine who use to sing our academic poems for us in her own voice with her own tune and melody.
    Hardly you can see such stuff in school now. Teacher cannot be blamed for this because they too have to maintain their graph to be in competition.

    Liked by 3 people

  2. Actually, a little old school teaching is starting to make its way back under the name of “maker classes.” It’s not much different from how you taught, but its supporters believe that it’s something new and different. There isn’t much new under the sun. 🙂

    Liked by 4 people

  3. Excellent post, Dwight, excellent post!

    I feel that the problem is that we have reached a peak, there is not much room for growth, so everyone is viciously competing, and neglecting to do things with discernment and creativity. In the past, simply having a high school education could give you a middle class life, not so anymore.

    I don’t know if you have seen this, but I wrote a short article promoting dynamic specialization over standardization, if you are interested, it is here:


    Liked by 2 people

  4. Pingback: What Happened to Creativity — Roth Poetry – OaktownVibes

  5. Thank you for sharing this brilliant post👍 we are taught things at school that don’t even relate to what the real world is about; it’s all very rigid and no room to explore lateral thinking. I accidentally came across and read a book by a former British head teacher at a school (I forgot his name, but will find out for you if your interested in reading his book) he wrote a book called Change, its very interesting and an easy read. In this he states how he basically flipped the script as he too was not impressed with all the things you so poetically said above and he scrapped the old and created his own curriculum and this changed everyone’s attitude to a more open and progressive one, it wasn’t easy mind due to conditioning . He used the same model as successful modern companies run their business.
    And not to mention the rigid way excludes a portion of the pupils and kills their natural flair for creativity as they don’t have help and support in their possible path. I could go on … lol💕Thanks again for a great post☺️
    Sophia 🙂

    Liked by 3 people

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