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Out of Our Minds: Learning to Be Creative

3.92  ·  Rating Details ·  2,822 Ratings  ·  291 Reviews
Robinson argues that organizations everywhere are trying to fix a problem that originates in schools and universities. Many people leave education with no idea what their creative abilities and strengths are. Here, Robinson shows what individuals can do to recover their creative talents.
Hardcover, 326 pages
Published March 8th 2011 by Capstone (first published January 1st 2001)
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Mar 02, 2013 Vivian rated it it was ok  ·  review of another edition
Maybe I should have read a few reviews before reading this book, since it was not at all what I anticipated based on the title. Most of these reviews are positive, which should be a good sign, but, still, I would have thought that the author was offering ideas to stimulate creativity in individuals given the cover. Instead we have an overview of educational systems going back thousands of years, changing paradigms, anecdotal stories of geniuses, most of whom flourished in spite of stifling socie ...more
Dec 22, 2012 Jayme rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: favorites
We are not teaching our children how to be creative, but teaching them how not to be creative...I'm paraphrasing, of course...Ken Robinson stated in a more eloquent and thought-provoking way. Basically, he writes about how the educational system is broken and how we need to change it to foster creativity. Some readers who gave this book a bad review point out that he doesn't really write about how we can tap into our creativity. I think that's kind of his point...our formal education has taken a ...more
Nov 08, 2009 Nick rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
The argument in "Out of Our Minds: Learning to be creative" is by now a familiar one. There are multiple intelligences, schools tend to favor the rather narrow fact- and logic-based kinds, that damages our creativity and especially our children who have other kinds of intelligence (kinesthetic, spatial, artistic, emotional) and grow up thinking they're no good or at least not very smart. Astonishing numbers of these kids, according to Robinson, go on to become successes in interesting walks of l ...more
Apr 04, 2013 Dominic rated it liked it
Shelves: teaching
I give 5 stars to Sir Ken Robinson's talks @ the TED conference and this animated talk on "Changing Educational Paradigms":

While I gobbled my way through this readable book, there is a lot of overlap between the various, easily accessible speeches online and what is pressed within these pages. Robinson has a plethora of evidence here--lots of examples of how different educational structures are reinvigorating schools, tapping creativity, and taking big ri
Oct 04, 2008 Liz rated it it was ok  ·  review of another edition
Recommended to Liz by: Laurie Thompson
Covers a LOT of territory -- too much, too briefly. His use of headings drove me crazy: all the same level, so all the same importance? There was clearly some hierarchy of ideas here, but it wasn't displayed; rather, it was a series of sound bites. Found myself skimming a lot, as much of the summary I've read elsewhere.

Exposing people to creative mediums, though, came through as a message. We know 'em when we see 'em, but getting them in front of us still seems the trick.
Loy Machedo
Dec 21, 2012 Loy Machedo rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Loy Machedo’s Book Review – Out of Our Minds: Learning to be Creative by Sir Ken Robinson

Out of Our Minds is a book of 286 pages divided into ten chapters where the main focus is Education Versus Creativity, the History of Creativity, the Drawbacks, the Challenges and the Changes required in the Current Educational System to promote creativity.

In the book, the author believes that creativity is a skillset we are all born with, but then it gets shunted aside because the school systems attempt to
Sarah Shahid
إن الاقتصاد حالياً يعاني من فجوة بين العرض والطلب على العقول المبدعة حيث أن هناك طلباً متزايداً يفوق العرض

وتزايد الطلب حصل كنتيجة لما يسمية الكاتب "ثورة اقتصادية" حيث يمر الاقتصاد وسوق العمل في القرن الواحد والعشرين بتغيرات كبيرة تفوق التصور تشبه الثور الصناعية بحجمها وتأثيرها وتعتمد أيضاً على التقدم التقني كمحرك أساسي، الأمر الذي يتطلب عقولاً مبدعة لتوظفها في سوق العمل

ولزيادة العرض من هذه العقول تقترح معظم السياسات رفع مستوى التعليم الأمر الذي زاد المشكلة سوءاً، إذ أن الحل يقتضي بضرورة تغيير س
Apr 15, 2013 Joe rated it liked it  ·  review of another edition
I was introduced to Ken Robinson's books on the subject of creativity with The Element, which he wrote in 2009. Out of Our Minds (2001) covers a lot of the same ground, but each of these books describes the subject from a very different perspective. Out of Our Minds is an historical and somewhat scientific treatise on the subject, (the origins of modern educational systems, the science of the brain's development of creativity, etc.). Its coverage is in-depth and scholarly (but very readable). Th ...more
Apr 11, 2012 Prashant rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
I had to review this book for my 'Management of Change' class and thus I had to do a very through analysis of every part of the book. This is just inform that this review can sound very descriptive to some, so bear with me.

The author talks about the challenges facing the HR professionals and the business executives in the ever changing business environment.
The book starts with an example how we used to see situations in isolation. This approach can no longer be used in present dynamic situatio
May 07, 2013 John rated it did not like it
Shelves: education
I was interested in reading Ken Robinson’s for a couple of reasons. First, I’m an educator who thinks that my classes should perhaps be doing more to foster creativity in my students. I thought that I might get some ideas from a book subtitled “Learning to Be Creative.” Second, I’ve watched some of the videos of Robinson’s famous TED talks. He makes some large (i.e. schools follow and industrial model and so don’t promote creativity) and controversial (i.e. student cheating, if done in the busin ...more
brian dean
Like many others, I really enjoyed Sir Robinson's TED Talk. In book form , however, I never really felt he proved his point. He describes 1) how creativity is being crushed by modern schools, 2) schools decide what is and isn't important - the three 'r's are important, but dance is not, 3) how creativity is needed in all aspects of study, and 4) arts are therefore important.

The first point, I readily grant - I live and teach in South Korea, the home of crushed creativity.

The third point is both
I picked up this book after listening to one of Ken Robison's TED talks on creativity and education. Ken covers a lot of territory, but it's a very readable introduction to some of the issues in education today and the necessity to stimulate creativity on personal and corporate levels.

I think more time could have been spent on solving the education problem. He suggests that education must be rebalanced so that there's balance across the curriculum, balance within the teaching of disciplines, an
Rachel Terry
Apr 15, 2011 Rachel Terry rated it it was ok  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: psych
I love watching Ken Robinson's TED talks. He's a wonderful speaker, so I was excited to get my hands on this book. I had to get it through Interlibrary loan from University of Wyoming. I'm sad to say that I was pretty disappointed. It wasn't focused or deep enough for me to come away with many new insights. There were so many statistics in the first couple of chapters that they lost their punch. I agree with him on many points, especially about how school systems need to change to prepare studen ...more
Feb 16, 2010 Kristian rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Interesting book about how we need to adjust the education system to embrace the idea that intelligence is not just how well one can read and do math. It is also found in the creative arts. Is not Picasso as intelligent as the scholar who writes about Picasso? Just in a different way?

Our current education system functions much the same way it did 100 years ago. The problem is the system was designed to produce workers for the industrial age. Robinson asks why, in the 21st century, is our educati
Stas Sajin
Jan 19, 2013 Stas Sajin rated it did not like it  ·  review of another edition
Those who have read this book, or plan to, largely did it because of the TED talk he gave sometime in 2008, which was a great talk, really. This book on the other hand reads more like the disjointed notes written by a freshman for intro to psychology and philosophy classes. The arguments are fairly simplistic, there are instances where he is plainly inaccurate (especially when he talks about neurosciency stuff), and he really does show a lack of creativity and imagination in telling us how we mi ...more
Aug 19, 2011 Joseph rated it did not like it  ·  review of another edition
The author drowns a poor argument with lengthy proliferation of superficially-related examples. The final payoff of some implementable solutions seems hardly worth the suffering required to get to them.

The true value in the reading was the potential for cross-functional enhancement of my own creativity as I went “behind enemy lines” to see what is going on in the field of creativity. I’ve peaked into the mind of a jealous, brooding, disenfranchised and yet wannabe academic...I didn't like what I
Mar 19, 2015 Ted rated it liked it  ·  review of another edition
In my opinion, this book is overrated. What it says is true and necessary for education and business, but the writing style is pedestrian at best, and not at all creative, though it is a book about creativity. I had trouble staying awake through most of it. However, what it says is definitely important, and it may have been written more with businessmen in mind, and if that's the case, it's probably more effective for them.
Dec 26, 2008 Stacey rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Sir Ken Robinson is awesome and I think if you watch his TED video from a few years back, you get all you need to get, though the book is still interesting. His story about the dancer is absolutely inspiring, especially for people raising children, or for people who grew up thinking there was something wrong with them academically. Who knows the real answer, bu the book provides different avenues that I know I didn't think of. Makes me want a child therapist on hand while these boys grow up.
Nov 16, 2013 Erin rated it really liked it
I could listen to Ken Robinson talk for days. I'm a huge fan. While most of what is written in this book is something I'd heard in one of his TED talks, I really enjoyed reading about his ideas in more detail. I think Robinson's ideas, especially as they relate to education, are illuminating and exciting.
Seiya Okawara
May 02, 2013 Seiya Okawara rated it liked it
I couldn't agree more to his idea that education should be reorganized to develop the creativity of children, as was shown with a lot of enterprises and schemes. But i still doubt the way he sees the today's and future world, which totally relies on innovation and technology and the belief that with creativity we can develop more and more.
Maha Abed
Apr 20, 2014 Maha Abed rated it it was amazing
An engrossing read, finished it in 48 hours. A much needed book for educational institutions everywhere. There is a real need to rethink our educational climate and about how we can do things differently by approaching education with creativity. It's time for a second Enlightenment.
Feb 24, 2012 Diogo rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Easy to read. Makes you think a LOT if the current teaching/hiring system is outdated.
Sep 05, 2013 Jess rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Great Book! Would Definitely Recommend Reading If You're A Creative Person Or Wish To Be.
Eustacia Tan
Oct 27, 2016 Eustacia Tan rated it really liked it
I was really excited to read this book because it's on creativity by Sir Ken Robinson, you know, that guy who gave the TED talk? But it was slightly different from my expectations, even though it was pretty interesting.

Rather than a treatise on how to be creative (like how Peak discussed not only how people develop their talents but gave concrete strategies), this book is a general discussion on creativity in schools, and how the current system of education, which was developed for a different t
Jan 17, 2017 Karen rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Robinson is an excellent writer and an inspirational thinker.

The book meanders through the minds (and sands) of time, both explaining things about humans as if we were aliens learning about Earth for the first time, and also as creatures who don't yet know the abilities we can achieve if only we were to put our minds to it. History, geography, politics, and environments -- his book traverses it all. Later chapters refer back to previous ones, but I can't remember if I liked it because it was en
Rajesh Israni
Sep 02, 2013 Rajesh Israni rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
There are hundreds of books written on "Creativity" covering a broad range of creativity topics, such as "How to be Creative", "Why to be Creative", "Why not to be Creative" and books that propose different thinking tools and strategies for developing & harnessing the creative habit, such as "Thinking out of the box", "Using your right brain", "Improve Intuition", "Thinking within the box", and last but not the least "Throw away the box", etc.

Any reader interested to learn more about creativ
Dec 26, 2016 Jacob rated it liked it
A good book looking at the difficulties and opportunities of modern educational systems (especially in the US and UK). If you're looking for something that's more personally applicable in terms of learning to be creative, I highly recommend Robinson's The Element: How Finding Your Passion Changes Everything (and then his book Finding Your Element, which is a follow-up book with even more practical advice).
La Gazelle
A book about creativity that does not bring anything new to the table, nothing creative. It advocates for creativity in schools and in the working environment without putting forth a solution for the lack of it. I would call it a waste of time.
Dec 15, 2016 Jackie rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Read this in July so I could lead our school's book study. Lots of interesting things to consider about technology, imagination, innovation, and the like.
Dec 05, 2016 Sagar rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
How concerned do we have to be in order to raise our future generation?

VERY, a little more than VERY!
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Sir Ken Robinson (born Liverpool 4 March 1950) is an internationally recognized leader in the development of innovation and human resources. He has worked with national governments in Europe and Asia, with international agencies, Fortune 500 companies, national and state education systems, non-profit corporations and some of the world’s leading cultural organizations. They include the Royal Shakes ...more
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“If all you had was academic ability, you wouldn't have been able to get out of bed this morning. In fact, there wouldn't have been a bad to get out of. No one could have made one. You could have written about possibility of one, but not have constructed it.” 24 likes
“I asked a professor of nanotechnology what they use to measure the unthinkable small distances of nanospace? He said it was the nanometre. This didn't help me very much. A nanometre is a billionth of a metre. I understood the idea but couldn't visualise what it meant. I said, "What is it roughly?" He thought for a moment and said, "A nanometre is roughly the distance that a man's beard grows in one second". I had never thought about what beards do in a second but they must do something. It takes them all day to grow about a milllimetre. They don't leap out of your face at eight o'clock in the morning. Beards are slow, languid things and our language reflects this. We do not say "as quick as a beard" or "as fast as a bristle". We now have a way of grasping of how slow they are - about a nanometre a second.” 20 likes
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