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Why is the American public school system so focused on different types of intelligence that outcasts many artists and musicians?

With so much mental issues and medicines suggested upon my generation, why are we not taught the profound importance of creativity and artistic expression on a larger scale?

My experience is that many artist types are also labeled "ADHD" which makes me wonder if this is an error in our society, a superficial label, or even worse, and attempt by those in power to medicate and numb those with vision and artistic abilities that truly transform the world. I don't know or understand this. I simply have experienced 2 decades of thought and observation and participation in many different diagnosis and misdiagnosis.

  • Sep 25 2012: "Why is the American public school system so focused on different types of intelligence that outcasts many artists and musicians?"

    Schools (well, except those madrassas that tell kids Jesus rode on dinosaurs) focus on "booksmarts" because there are no jobs in the artist/musician sector and it is not ethical to set kids up for unemployment without telling them. However there are plenty of "creative" classes and extracurricular programs kids can get credit for (those things didn't exist 100 years ago and kids would literally be slapped on their wrist if they moved, that's still true in many other countries) and the assertion that ADHD means creative type is a myth to make parents (who either feed their kids way to much sugar or have a hard time accepting their kid was just born with ADHD and has no special skills to "make up for" that) feel better. A kid diagnosed with ADHD is not smarter or more creative than other kids, he'll just have a harder time sitting down reading books and making his homework, which pushes him into certain fields that don't require as much sitting down, that shouldn't be interpreted as him having an inherent talent for those fields.
  • Sep 25 2012: School systems feel that if everyone has the same set of skills like math or science, then those people can find a good job and make a good life for themselves. They don't see that enhancing ones skill rather than having one develop new skills is more important. I've had teachers that have told me and fellow classmates is that as students we are basically being farmed into something that doesn't better our skills. I feel as though school's should allow students the freedom of choosing what skills they want to enhance whether its playing the guitar or becoming a good mathematician. It should be allowed for us as students to increase the skills we have as a way to better ourselves and make us more ourselves instead of being classified as a norm.
  • Sep 24 2012: because they want us to be like everyone else. we used to have a thing called freedome but now its a different defintion. they want us to waste a lot of our time on stuff that we dont really need they should ask us what we want to do or what classes we want to take to help us in our life.... really science, when am i going to need to know this shit. math so much technology. ughhh
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    Sep 15 2012: In the US we have a very strict idea of what is the best way to educate the masses. Anything, or anyone that deviates from the sit-in-your-chair-and-listen mentality is labeled and accused of either not "wanting to learn" or not being "able to learn." Instead of trying to fit everyone into a single paradigm, we need to expand our ideas of what is education and what is ultimitley is important for an indivudla to know. Otherwise we will be doomed to become the least educated nation in the modern world.
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    Sep 1 2012: The school system takes the abuse for this occurance and that is not fair. After the PISA exams the US federal government instituted the Common Core Values into all curriculunms. The states instituted STEM requirements for all schools. Schools had no say or chopice in the matter. If they refused the changes they would lose funding.

    It should be noted that this was done as a matter of national pride not to improve education. Educational problems have been noted and documented with little or no response from either the state or federal level. The last input was No Child Left Behind. When the US came in on the bottom half of the bottoim third of the 89 nations taking the PISA exams the US was shamed and then took action like they cared about education.

    These mandates came from legislators not educators. In order to facilitate all of the requirements of the federal and state governments and to adjust for the loss of funds ... schools had to priortize each subject. The core subjects are exempt from this process. Guess what is left ... electives go first.

    I you took the arts to their core you would find the the Golden Number 1.618 that is critical in math, science, art, music is the dominate factor. Kids that excell in the arts are normally erated in the top of the class rankings.

    If I had a vote I would add one "art of choice" as one of the core subjects.

    I do not have a problem of going to a seven subject core in the same manner the Singapore schools have done. However, I believe that there should be a option at the high school level to either go to a manual trades curriculum or to a college prep curriculum. The core subjects would vary upon choice.

    Reece, it would have helped me to have been able to review your bio to be more direct in this answer. It leaves the responder flying in the dark. I gave a very generic answer to a specific question because of this. Sorry to not be more direct.

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    Sep 1 2012: it's a way to help people learn who learn in different ways ; this is the best outcome so far but it still labels people the wrong way I thnk.

    I would doodle when listening to the teacher/ professor lecture. when I was made to put my pencil down, my mind went right out the window- daydreaming..... when I as allowed to doodle - i knew the answer to every question ; but i could never understand why the instructor was so Angry when I knew the answer.....

    later in life I realized when a friends child was scolded for doodling - that that's how my mind works -
    I'm a visual person - i need to draw to compute information.
    Today, instead of recognizing we all learn differently we are labeled.
    by labeling artists as ADHD the educational system is telling the world they are 'off ' a bit....that's unfortunate.
    when what is actually happening they are using all of their brain more often - they are more in tuned than others.
    the only way around this is to attend schools for the arts....they understand the creative mind.
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    Gail .

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    Aug 30 2012: Here is a TED video that directly addresses your question"

    Here is an example of what the above vid talks about. The Dr. being interviewed is a famous physicist.
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      Sep 1 2012: These are both great and Robinson's books are excellent -
  • Aug 29 2012: As my son keeps reminding me, the answer to many seemingly mysterious human behaviors is simple: people are stupid.

    Our educators are largely ignorant of matters like intelligence and creativity. With the best of intentions, they are stumbling in the dark, trying to find ways to justify their positions and income levels. Some of them still care, and are still trying their best to educate young people. They are not very good at it yet.

    No one is to blame. They are doing the best they can.
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      Sep 1 2012: Great Answer Barry - and you Son is a Genius too!