Top 20 Sir Ken Robinson Quotes to Unlock the Genius Within

Many people know Sir Ken Robinson from his groundbreaking 2006 TED talk about the central role of creativity in unlocking human potential. The poignant and amusing talk, Do schools kill creativity?, struck a profound chord with people the world over, who connected with his moving appeal for a more diverse understanding of human intelligence and ability. It remains to this day the most popular TED talk of all time, having been viewed nearly 50 million times since it was first delivered.

Sir Ken Robinson is an international expert on education and creativity, and an advisor to governments, non-profits, educational institutions and arts bodies around the world. He is the recipient of many awards and honorary degrees, and the author of numerous books, including the New York Times bestseller, The Element: How Finding Your Passion Changes Everything.

Originally from a working-class neighborhood of Liverpool in the UK, Sir Ken Robinson was knighted in 2003 for his lifetime of service to the arts. Here are our Top 20 Sir Ken Robinson Quotes to Unlock the Genius Within.

Top 20 Sir Ken Robinson Quotes to Unlock the Genius Within

Top 20 Sir Ken Robinson Quotes to Unlock the Genius Within

Every single one of the 100 billion lives who have walked the face of this earth is unique and unrepeatable. To be born at all is a miracle, so what are you going to do with your life?

Human communities depend upon a diversity of talent, not a singular conception of ability. And at the heart of the challenge is to reconstitute our sense of ability and intelligence.

We stigmatize mistakes. And we’re now running national educational systems where mistakes are the worst thing you can make — and the result is that we are educating people out of their creative capacities.

Creativity is as important as literacy.

If you’re not prepared to be wrong, you’ll never come up with anything original.

Sir Ken Robinson quote - If you're not prepared to be wrong, you'll never come up with anything original

 

You can be creative in anything – in math, science, engineering, philosophy – as much as you can in music or in painting or in dance.

The role of a creative leader is not to have all the ideas; it’s to create a culture where everyone can have ideas and feel they’re valued.

There’s a wealth of talent that lies in all of us. All of us, including those who work in schools, must nurture creativity systematically and not kill it unwittingly.

Some of the most brilliant, creative people I know did not do well at school. Many of them didn’t really discover what they could do—and who they really were—until they’d left school and recovered from their education.

Imagination is the source of all human achievement.

Sir Ken Robinson quote 2 - Imagination is the source of all human achievement

Education and training are the keys to the future. A key can be turned in two directions. Turn it one way and you lock resources away; turn it other way and you realize resources and give people back to themselves.

To be creative you actually have to do something.

You can’t be a creative thinker if you’re not stimulating your mind, just as you can’t be an Olympic athlete if you don’t train regularly.

Curiosity is the engine of achievement.

For most of us the problem isn’t that we aim too high and fail. It’s just the opposite: we aim too low and succeed.

Sir Ken Robinson quote - For most of us the problem isn’t that we aim too high and fail. It’s just the opposite we aim too low and succeed

What you’re doing now, or have done in the past, need not determine what you can do next and in the future.

Life is not linear. When you follow your own true north you create new opportunities, meet different people, have different experiences and create a different life.

 

Passion is the driver of achievement in all fields. Some people love doing things they don’t feel they’re good at.

 

Being in your element is not only about aptitude, it’s about passion: it is about loving what you do.

What you do for yourself dies with you when you leave this world, what you do for others lives on forever.


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