“Hi! This is to my little friend Param. He is just like me. Except that he is naughtier than me. But he never gets caught. He always manages to escape my mothers’ wrath. I really envy him”. This is a brief account of a little 6 year old boy called Param.

Most of us have as parents witnessed our child in the age groups of 4 to 6 fanaticizing about new friends, visiting new destination and creating a world of make belief. This age is also called the ‘fantasy years’. This stage marks the beginning of creativity and divergent thinking for the children to be liars and manipulators. This behavior is often followed by threats, warnings and confrontations.

As the child enters grade I, the education system is marked by discipline, convergent thinking, control and norms. The child very soon loses his innocence and aligns himself to conditioned learning and begins the journey on rote memory. In his private moments he still gets pulled towards imaginary friends, toys and characters. He thus starts living in two worlds namely his world of make-belief (fantasy) and the real world. The world of fantasy is so vibrant and the child has the ability to control and manipulate this world. This engagement makes him happy and powerful. The real world is difficult tough, negotiable and dominated by adults. If the gap between the two is not too big, the child is able to co-hold both the worlds. He is able to distinguish between them and change his behavior as the situation demands.

The next 10 years are full of rules, boundaries, logical thinking and marks that go with conformance. By the time the adolescent is at the cross road of making career / stream choices, he s transformed into a programmed conforming student. Although traditional education system does not encourage creative and deduction thinking, the child already carries seeds of such thought processes since childhood. It remains unused and when certain receptors of the brain remain unused they weaken deteriorate. If creativity is mapped on a graph it would show high breaks in the first few years and then a dip and plateauing for the school years. If the student is encouraged to hone a talent that requires creativity, he is able to retain it and convert it into a future career. For example, architecture, landscaping, graphics, creative writing designing, and journalism, media and advertising are forms of creative thoughts. Students are sent to crash causes to increase their CI (creativity index) overnight. For some they have never lost it, but for many the have to re-invent it. The new educational system comes as a blessing as it promotes the concept of MI and various forms of learning.

However, the irony is that few seats are reserved for __________ boards. It is a paradox in our education system.

– Dr. Nimrat Singh