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Are our kids creative enough?

Creativity will be among the top three most important job skills by 2020. So, how do we ensure that our children are brought up to be creative for the future careers they face?

Today’s kids are more likely to be found glued to their smartphones than playing make-believe. Unless they are given the time to develop their imagination, their world risks being limited by what they see on the screen.
For many children, their time is split between school and extracurricular classes, such as music or sports. This is all structured, monitored play where they’re largely following instructions – formal training rather than taking a football to the park with friends.

Creativity is also struggling in many of our schools. Unlike STEM subjects, creative skills are harder to quantify, and often don’t fall neatly into traditional educational measuring systems, so budgetary pressures and the demands of league tables mean creative courses are gradually being dropped at all levels of the curriculum.
But this ignores the future economy’s need for more creatively minded people.

Around 10 per cent of all UK jobs can be found in the creative industries, covering sectors as diverse as advertising, marketing, design, film and TV, publishing, museums, fashion and music.

Together, these industries are worth almost £93bn to the UK economy, and the World Economic Forum forecasts that, by 2020, creativity will be among the top three most important job skills.

By 2020 creativity will be among the top three most important job skills.

Careers that require imagination and creativity are the least likely to be replaced by advances in technology. A recent Radio 4 panel programme ‘Bringing Up Britain’ got me thinking, as it examined the importance of creativity for our children.

Our children have little freedom to explore and be creative, or to develop their own imagination and ideas. We need to give them more time to play and explore the world around them, otherwise they could miss out on an exciting future career – and we could lose the next generation of entrepreneurs, inventors and designers.

At The Team, we are strong believers in supporting the development of young creatives. We run annual workshops for young college leavers, and sponsor between 10 to 15 interns every year, giving them the chance to spend time inside a creative agency. During their month-long internship they work on many different projects, learning new skills and being mentored by a senior designer.

We will always champion the importance of creativity at all ages and would urge everyone to find the time to indulge their creative side – who knows where it might lead?

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