How to escape education's death valley | Sir Ken Robinson

  • Added:  4 years ago
  • Sir Ken Robinson outlines 3 principles crucial for the human mind to flourish -- and how current education culture works against them. In a funny, stirring talk he tells us how to get out of the educational "death valley" we now face, and how to nurture our youngest generations with a climate of possibility.

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  • EducationEducation
  • Runtime: 19:12
  • TEDTalk  TEDTalks  TED Talk  TED Talks  TED  \TED Talks Education\  \Ken Robinson\  \Sir Ken Robinson\  education  student  culture  

Comments: 2 028

  • Mr Progress
    Mr Progress 14 hours ago

    man I would love to have had this guy as my teacher.

  • Jelena Evans
    Jelena Evans Day ago

    I still think that standardised testing is a no-no!

  • AudioTB
    AudioTB Day ago

    I was educated in the current system and I also heard there are three kinds of people: those who can count and those who can't

  • JSPR shots
    JSPR shots 2 days ago

    If would love to pick the classes I want and not be forced into classes I don't want. I would choose radio and television and french. An hour (more or less) per class then you go home.

  • Jeremiah Ross
    Jeremiah Ross 2 days ago

    Hello, I am a young business major eager to learn and find creative ways to serve my community and follow my dreams at the same time. One obstacle I have found is finding the money to fund my formal education as well as my life. I have learned that I am a very creative person with an abundance of ideas, and the main reason for me to have money would be to buy myself time to cultivate these ideas instead of having to struggle for survival. I also have a link to a go fund me page that I pray will reach the right people who believe in the young and ambitious. Lastly, if this reaches someone who is not inclined to help, I hope that person would be inclined to send it to someone else that would like to help. Thank you in advance!

  • Peter Faber
    Peter Faber 3 days ago

    Remove religious influences from politics and the system will correct itself. Religion is all about conformity. Creativity is a threat to religious based cultures. Examples like Finland are the most atheist countries. And other examples are countries where religion does not interfere with government.


    Thanks Sir, by your talk. In fact, me like an Spaniard, I've learnt so much from british and american philosophers and psychologists. Ayn Rand and Nathaniel Branden is one of them. Emerson, Marden and Smiles are also. Liberty and necessity in learning are effective. I agree with you in that learning is a creative process, not a mere routine. But I suspect that something is rooten in Danemark: we are all doomed in a system of idiotized masses: an Orwellian world. Thanks again, Ken.

  • Billy Bob Thornton
    Billy Bob Thornton 5 days ago

    The first joke triggered the liberal Californians in the audience.

  • M Garcia
    M Garcia 6 days ago +1

    This is not a teacher problem, a student problem, or a district problem, it's a fundamental problem of how we view schools - teachers - students. I wanted to become a teacher in the states, but I could not survive (mentally/economically) with so much going against you. The root of the problem is how the system is thought of and who it benefits. If the masses of low labor workers know their worth, then the upper class reap all the benefits. But if we seriously decide to make a change, in all aspects of what relationships we have within the umbrella of teaching/learning. It's a process that some are not willing to take.

  • seinundzeiten
    seinundzeiten 6 days ago +1

    so funny and clever

  • Insanely Racing
    Insanely Racing 7 days ago

    Freak it!! I am going to break through and repeal and replace this old junky school system!!!!!

  • Evan Sanchez
    Evan Sanchez 7 days ago

    Pure acceptance cattle unlikely benefit participant medicine struggle.

    ROHIT KOHOK 9 days ago


  • Ray B
    Ray B 10 days ago


  • A. F. Nik.
    A. F. Nik. 10 days ago

    It really annoys me when people put Maths in STEM and not the arts.

    and yes ik what stem means

  • SkyWalker
    SkyWalker 12 days ago +1

    "Education is not a mechanical system, its a human system" Well said sir.

  • suraj punjabi
    suraj punjabi 15 days ago

    he has aged a lot since giving his famous 2007 talk.

  • . jwkkilljoy
    . jwkkilljoy 16 days ago

    teared me up a bit. I think this is the best TED talk i have seen so far

  • Лена Морозова


  • emre kececi
    emre kececi 16 days ago

    Türkiye'deki eğitimi görse gözlüğünü götüne sokarak intihar eder

  • Ian Christensen
    Ian Christensen 19 days ago +1

    As a Canadian I'd say he was mistaken about Canada. We have similar problems here. Teachers and schools are evaluated by the government on standardized tests. Our school boards are punished or awarded funding based off of those tests. The focus of our schools is on the STEM subjects and all the other subjects are vastly under funded and maligned. Children are still evaluated on their ability to perform well on tests and sometimes papers/assignments. There's little to no individualized teaching and our teachers are often just more advanced babysitters. This may have changed since my time in school (graduated high school just over 10 years ago) but from what I gather from what teachers in my life have told me, this hasn't changed much. Also our drop-out rate isn't all too great either, and is often on par with American drop-out rates. I think North America, in general, is fixated on testing as an evaluation on children's abilities rather than the school's ability to teach them. Many of my peers can remember being told that they're either a "good student" or a "bad student" without much of any effort on the part of schools or parents to examine the underlying problems that may result in such observations.

  • Delta Samurai
    Delta Samurai 20 days ago

    trying to make a meme whos ted?

  • Eryk Pyts
    Eryk Pyts 20 days ago

    he's a left-wing ideologue who wants to de-emphasise STEM & grading, to make non-White children appear to perform better at school: it's a road to no where

    • Eryk Pyts
      Eryk Pyts 6 days ago

      "right-wing nutcase ranting... paranoia" LOL;
      have you heard about H1B visa system in the U.S.?
      what kind of professionals do you think American industry wants to attract?
      STEM PhDs (students who gained illustrious grades) or
      sociology majors whose papers were rarely graded?

    • André Ferreira
      André Ferreira 6 days ago

      Yet another right-wing nutcase ranting about his paranoia in the comments section...

  • J
    J 24 days ago

    Brilliant analogy at the end

  • Maya Honda-Granirer
    Maya Honda-Granirer 25 days ago +1

    I love this, totally agree.

  • Hayk Avagyan
    Hayk Avagyan 25 days ago

    Everyone knows this stuff, but no one has solutions... we want solutions...

  • alan canyon
    alan canyon 26 days ago

    I came across a book, "Emancipation Proclamation of Education" on Amazon. It's aimed at redirecting public education, but contains all you need to know to set up a healthy independent system of your own. Highly recommended! Students are learning compliance, NOT useful knowledge and skills.

  • Keyser Söze
    Keyser Söze 28 days ago

    I've loved Ken ever since I watched his talk years ago, "Do schools kill creativity?". Fabulous then, fabulous now. Governments need an overhaul - not just int he US, the UK is the same.

  • Take It
    Take It 29 days ago

    its alright we got you tube, were back on the rise the powers that be are screwed

  • Jonathan Iliffe
    Jonathan Iliffe Month ago

    Another speech about what's wrong with education. Let's hear some solutions. What does creative, curiosity-driven, individualized learning look like? Let's see it in action, show us how instead of always telling us why.

  • The Yummy Burritos
    The Yummy Burritos Month ago

    400 dislikers are school board members

  • Rocky Deejonamoo
    Rocky Deejonamoo Month ago

    A teacher has two jobs: Filling young minds with knowledge (i.e. facilitating learning), but more importantly, giving young minds a compass so that the knowledge doesn't go to waste.

  • Hi Jack
    Hi Jack Month ago

    Just talks talks talks and even more talks but no fucking thing gets done...this is what irritates me the most
    Everybody knows there's problem in the education but no does any fucking thing

  • Hi Jack
    Hi Jack Month ago

    Sometimes I wish was Finnish

  • Quetzalcoatl - the Serpent God

    The view counter needs three more zeroes at the end.

  • 고건
    고건 Month ago

    Sadly, He said that standardized test should not be the dominant culture of education, however, I should take an exam about his speech(script) in next Thursday.

  • Calvin Wood
    Calvin Wood Month ago

    This guy is my spirit animal and whoever is my teacher next year better prepare for me when I refuse to do anything that I feel will not be beneficial to me

  • kichigaisensei
    kichigaisensei Month ago

    Maybe if our schools were less concerned with pushing various liberal agendas and more concerned with actual learning, there'd be an improvement.

    Instead of spending a second talking about transgender rights, teach the kids to read Plato in Greek. Instead of teaching them the government is the solution to all society's problems, teach them calculus.

  • Rabbie Burns
    Rabbie Burns Month ago

    I love Ken Robinson's talks, he makes me want to be a better teacher .. & i'm not even a teacher!! It is true though that all the education system is geared towards is to pass exams, teach people to get high scores, wrote learning, monkey see monkey do. We all know people who have passed many exams & they appear to not be very intelligent, or at least not creatively intelligent, but they studied every night & memorized the answers required to pass the tests.

  • Oana Sterlacci
    Oana Sterlacci Month ago

    Sir Ken Robinson makes great points, however, he fails to understand the most basic thing about American students vs students in Finland: Finland is a homogeneous society and American is heterogeneous society. It's difficult to engage students individually when you have 30 students in your class and they all have different cultural values. He fails to understand that there are cultures that look down on education and sabotage education in that way. America is by definition heterogeneous and this is the challenge in education and in other social issues in America.

  • santh2003
    santh2003 Month ago

    he is a "sir" for a reason

  • C Powis
    C Powis 2 months ago

    There's only two types of people in the world. The ones that entertain, and the ones that observe. ~ Britney Spears

  • ugo et
    ugo et 2 months ago

    Too many laughters and frequent applause are annoying and prevent this lecture..

  • Nathaniel Radan
    Nathaniel Radan 2 months ago

    "neither r protected" 'yah cause i told"

  • Nathaniel Radan
    Nathaniel Radan 2 months ago

    so annoying all that 100s theyd spend out for Therapy i need clothes new cell phone and shoes and a long back leather office chair

  • Nathaniel Radan
    Nathaniel Radan 2 months ago

    "medium sand' like when u have fun/work on the farm'

  • Nathaniel Radan
    Nathaniel Radan 2 months ago

    ...oh yahhh i love those n 'bleach"

  • Nathaniel Radan
    Nathaniel Radan 2 months ago

    "need some mid rise to sit on those Reeboks"

  • Nathaniel Radan
    Nathaniel Radan 2 months ago

    "didnt even Say.. Anything.." 'No problem! We can notify you when it is available"

  • Nathaniel Radan
    Nathaniel Radan 2 months ago

    "thats him???' 'no.. cargo belted.. 'lily unis." lolde

  • Nathaniel Radan
    Nathaniel Radan 2 months ago

    i woke about her telling me "that is a puppet 'they have no feet' its called Slavery. i no how to do u"

  • Nathaniel Radan
    Nathaniel Radan 2 months ago

    guess i dont get that polo from Hollister Co

  • Nathaniel Radan
    Nathaniel Radan 2 months ago

    also need winter jeans

  • Nathaniel Radan
    Nathaniel Radan 2 months ago

    thats it God!!! do it for me! sauconys i wanted seem to be gone so she put out a 7 n "REEBOK ZPRINT 3D - MEN'S" LOVE THEM

    • Nathaniel Radan
      Nathaniel Radan 2 months ago

      Selected Style: Asteroid Dust/Coal/White/Black like hillary "note that for the record"

  • Nathaniel Radan
    Nathaniel Radan 2 months ago

    "oh.. 'guhmeim ohm yahm WHUghm...' vegans lke daril id be forced to semi new balance lows" them originals jazz low Vegan vs other Saucony Shuus life

  • Nathaniel Radan
    Nathaniel Radan 2 months ago

    creepy night before im to call and check back on glasis order (new glasis) coming in... i dreampte i talkt to the 1 guy

  • Nathaniel Radan
    Nathaniel Radan 2 months ago

    thumbnail caption ".....'can he sleep in my bed?'," wud be a NO! that emma&ellie life

  • Steph Towse
    Steph Towse 2 months ago

    If you sit your child down doing low grade clerical work don't be surprise if they start to fidget" - love it!!!

  • Pigpuns
    Pigpuns 2 months ago


  • Banana 9
    Banana 9 2 months ago

    When audience hears the end of the word is ending and the earths core had shattered (HAHAHAahHA)

  • Otherized Meme
    Otherized Meme 2 months ago

    who is this man's old dead friend and did he write any books?

  • Martin Cortez Ortiz
    Martin Cortez Ortiz 2 months ago

    I agree, meow meghan, serious educational change is not a laughing matter, Mr. Robinson's perspective on things or in the manner in which he presents them engages viewers on many levels, capitalising on humour and verifiable data. His MO presents a global crisis (entire educational systems in disarray) that is gaining momentum and has educational authorities scrambling for quick fixes, in a way that informs and reaches people through metered humour. His videos are informative and entertaining to the degree that you can watch them several times and learn something new each time. I salute you, and Mr. J. Baird (for posing the question), on your perspective of "why not both?", that is exactly the kind of thinking, that according to Mr. Robinson, needs to take place for things to begin to really change. Onward Mr. Robinson. Thank you TED TALKS for sharing!

  • MzDeWeezeR
    MzDeWeezeR 2 months ago

    This is so right on! There are so many quotable points and key ideas in this. Everyone in education or who has children should see this. I've seen many of his talks, but this is one of my favorites!

  • kostas kokkolatos
    kostas kokkolatos 2 months ago

    I wish I had him for teacher TBH.

  • Edvvn :D
    Edvvn :D 2 months ago

    The human mind is so pathetic. Everyone in this room, and everyone in the other Talks ive seen him do. They agree with him, big time. but still, nothing happens. Nothing! Someone has got to do something, God you cant just sit about and wait for someone else to do it.
    This guy is a genius. The world, and the future needs more humans like him.

    All humans need to get their head out the sand, you aren't an ostrich. You can fly.

    EVIE ILES 2 months ago

    Private pilot

    EVIE ILES 2 months ago

    MIA 2050

  • Sergio Privado
    Sergio Privado 3 months ago

    This man is a great and witty speaker but he is an idealistic that proposes a utopia. Schools are a reflection of society. The problem is not that teachers are not interested in what he says. The problem is that parents are not interested, authorities are not interetested. I would say that even many students are not interested. We want an education to have a degree to make money. Period. This is the real and widespread way of thinking. Their speeches consider education as an isolated element, unconnected with the rest of life. For instance, I have worked in a supermarket and I have worked as a waiter. I enjoyed these jobs very much. I can say they were my passion. But the fact is you can't support a family with 600 Euros. So, I had to study a degree. And I don't want any Finish to take offence but it is a statistic fact that alcoholism and suicide are a plague. I suppose this is a complex phenomenon but , do you think this has nothing to do wiht education? I prefer to drop out and stay alive.

  • Herbert Saegert
    Herbert Saegert 3 months ago

    so bad u suck u idiot im gay

  • bob40054
    bob40054 3 months ago


  • Jacobi Powell
    Jacobi Powell 3 months ago

    this sucks

  • Humble Eurus
    Humble Eurus 3 months ago

    Curiousity. One line spoken by a Chinese teacher of mine when I was eleven made me strive to struggle through quadratic equations today despite my recent years of below average scores. And that is "math can be used to predict the future"

  • Debra Blouin
    Debra Blouin 3 months ago

    I think he speaks to a laudable ideal. However, there are skills, abilities, and knowledge spheres which are crucial to a solid educational foundation which are not fun or easy or naturally entertaining. How to make these areas engaging, or at least connecting them to a larger understanding of the reason for learning is the big problem.

  • Hash Frowns
    Hash Frowns 3 months ago

    It's funny how the overwhelming majority of people agree with this opinion, and yet the education system continues along the same path, only becoming worse.

  • jennifer young
    jennifer young 3 months ago +1

    Humor vs. intellect = public interest

  • Jazmine Waller
    Jazmine Waller 3 months ago

    The Great Sir Ken Robinson! Brilliant!

  • Carlucho
    Carlucho 3 months ago

    Facebook Page: OTRA EDUCACIÓN:

  • marta JURGIEWICZ
    marta JURGIEWICZ 3 months ago

    Sir - you're the authentic spirit that makes me more curious and "under influence" of your wisdom. Pls. come to Poland:}

  • td fisk
    td fisk 4 months ago

    I love this guy, but it's such a shame that this reality has taken so long to surface. I was saying this in the early 80s. My first marriage I had two stepsons and the first day I took them to school my war with educators began. Our first parent/teacher meeting I found myself facing 7 people, it was so easy to see who they were and what their motives were. My first thought was, these people are stupid they need ten times more people to take me on, I was a new type of rebel.Then I proved it. Not all of my generation were drugged out Hippies. In no uncertain terms I told them that I am the first and last authority and I will die to protect them. Educators are so easily frightened, but then all bullies are. After the divorce I married and had two natural sons. I didn't bother with going to war with teachers again, I was already at war with our Homeowners Association dictatorship. So I homeschooled.

    The young lady in the other video of yours that let it all out at her graduation was a pure pleasure. I sometimes have to remind myself that the American young have always been a unique breed. They are often invisible with the occasional "troublemaker" appearing to be the exception. I know them well, I was one of them. My troublemaking days started when I went in the Navy in 1965, I was only 17. I dropped out of high school after failing the last semester of the 10th grade. School wasn't a good place for those with learning disabilities. So I learned that I had to teach myself. I was borderline illiterate, so I had to teach myself how to read. Finally, I read my first book at 21. I see today that there are even more children just like me, but worse having to endure abuse, degradation and indoctrination.

    A little example of just how much of a troublemaker I was, I had an interesting incident while on my 2nd ship in Key West, Florida. I think it was 1968 there were race riots in Miami. It had got so bad that our Naval Station were sending riot control and about 50 were to come from ship. I was an early pick because of my expertise and experience on my first ship in the Mediterranean. One night on midwatch I was with the officer who in charge of our riot detail. We got to talking and to my horror he said if the rioters give him any excuse he would order us to open fire. It really pissed me off, but I kept control. I tried to appeal to his humanity and professionalism, it didn't work. Finally I told him that if her did that I would kill him. We were silent for the rest of the watch. The next morning I was notified that the officer filed Court Martial charges for threatening to kill an officer.

    Those who distrust our military should really pay attention now. I knew I was facing at least 20 years in prison at Fort Leavenworth Naval Prison, infamous for its cruelty by the Marines. The ship's officer who was assigned to my case came to and said he received a message from JAG in Washington that the senior attorney, a full Captain is taking my case. He also said that the Navy and Marine attorney refused to volunteer to be prosecutors, they had to be ordered, very rare. It wasn't long that I learned the entire ship, including our Captain, were supporting me. One day I came up with an idea that I wanted sent to my attorney. I wanted to use the Nuremberg Trials Decision that following orders to commit an immoral act is no defense. I could see that can be turned to disobeying an unlawful order. Later that evening I learned that the tribunal voted unanimously to drop all charges. The officer in question was severely reprimanded and transferred. That was a very big deal because I realized that even though I couldn't read, it didn't I was dumb or incapable.

    I was robbed of an education in public school, but not by intent. Today our young are being outright assaulted. When I see so much abuse from schools, TSA and the courts I can't imagine why parents aren't protecting their children and why our society no longer protects out our children. It is a shame of the highest order. Teachers knew I would without any doubt that I would kill or die to protect my children.

    I've noticed that Britain, especially after Brexit vote, that more and more conservatives like Ken Robinson are going public. The Labor Party is really taking a dive, just like our socialist Party they falsely call the Democratic Party. The cleansing has begun, but it should have been at least 30 years ago.


  • Rohit Rajora
    Rohit Rajora 4 months ago

    A great public speaker he is

  • Luffy D
    Luffy D 4 months ago


  • The Ultimate Reductionist

    Organisms, including humans, ARE machines.

  • The Ultimate Reductionist

    Parents - don't let your babies grow up to be Trump voters.
    I think that's in a song somewhere.

  • The Ultimate Reductionist

    No mention of BREEDING and the evils of BREEDING - forcing new organisms into existence WITHOUT THEIR PERMISSION.

    JWARD 4 months ago

    i love it how more people put their hands up for have 2 or more children than just have children.

  • Jayachandra N
    Jayachandra N 4 months ago

    this guy is wonderful; so funny and wise

  • Edith Boesch
    Edith Boesch 4 months ago

    The question is: Why is the educational system like it is today? There is a reason for it! The reason for it is that most of the gouvernments don't want our children to be creative! They want that the biggest part of the population stays formatted the way they want to have them, to be able to keep control over them! Imagine what would happen if a high pourcentage of the population would use there capacity of creativity? Would they contunue to obey the gouvernments as they do today? Would they agree with the decisions of the people who want to control us? So there are two ways: either the governments changes the educational school systems! or each one of us who already has a little bit of creativity has enough courage to use it to change this system! We have the choice!

  • Casian D'souza
    Casian D'souza 4 months ago

    Natural selection should eliminate any creature that is not wired to learn and adapt to its environment. Unfortunately the cultural environment many humans are born into stifles development beyond the confines of the community.

  • Casian D'souza
    Casian D'souza 4 months ago

    The culture of education is not separate and distinct from the general culture of society. To get away from a culture of conformity, the entire society has to be addressed by changing its institutions of conformity. That includes not only conforming to organized religions and clubs but also supporting a political party's values over your own personal values.

  • Adem Aydemir
    Adem Aydemir 4 months ago

    Great man

  • Xuan Huong Nguyen
    Xuan Huong Nguyen 4 months ago

    I'd rather have a system where no one drop out because people are having fun learning than a high-achieving but stressful one.

  • Emily Caballero
    Emily Caballero 4 months ago


  • Chotibunder77
    Chotibunder77 4 months ago

    So what does this teaching look like? How do we unlock children's curiosity?

  • Name Changer
    Name Changer 4 months ago

    Thankyou  Ken!   Yes, let us Trust! Trust the natural propensity for humans to  be curious, and so, learn.

  • Ranger Jauregui
    Ranger Jauregui 4 months ago

    Alfred Preachin'!!!

  • PublicEnemyNo1
    PublicEnemyNo1 4 months ago

    This guy needs help getting a suit that fits :p....great video though...

  • LovelyLivingDead
    LovelyLivingDead 4 months ago

    I am a junior in high school. I feel like I missed out on something greater; Many years of my life have been wasted. People who know me say that I'm smart, but I don't think I can make it through college. I am too miserable in school.

  • Isaiah Hansen
    Isaiah Hansen 4 months ago

    I'm already curious, I watch TED ED for fun

  • Shekaeb Wallizada
    Shekaeb Wallizada 4 months ago

    I wish someone would change America's education system.

  • E115
    E115 4 months ago

    Well I would say many Americans don't get irony. At least many young Americans.

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