“If you’re not prepared to be wrong, you’ll never come up with anything original”
- Sir Ken Robinson
This is an interesting thought. I remember as a child being asked a question and frantically trying to read my teacher’s mind to find out what words she was looking for me to say.
I hear educators talk about creating a “safe” learning environment, but really the children in their classes are terrified of having an original thought. They are frightened of being wrong. Creating a “safe” learning environment should mean recognizing and encouraging individual strengths and creativity; celebrating new ideas and interesting questions; discovering new ways of looking at things and deciding together what works and what doesn’t through a process of inquiry and critical thinking; and, in the end, creating good risk-takers, innovative thinkers and world problem solvers.
I tell my kids that sometimes they have to make mistakes in order to learn. If everything is easy then they’re not being challenged to think. I tell them that everything that was ever invented didn’t happen on the first try and that sometimes things are even invented by accident!
Many of life’s failures are people who did not realize how close they were to success when they gave up.
I have not failed. I’ve just found 10,000 ways that won’t work. -Thomas Edison (probably would not have done well on most standardized tests)