The engines driving the U.S. economy rely on entrepreneurship, technology and innovating new products and services. A key to developing children’s creativity and their ability to innovate is nurturing their natural curiosity. Dr. Milton Chen, senior fellow and executive director emeritus, at the George Lucas Educational Foundation, highlights the E.N. Thompson Forum "Creativity, Curiosity and Learning" at 7 p.m., Feb. 24 at the Lied Center. Chen will share examples of schools and after-school programs emphasizing creative learning through project-based learning, the visual and performing arts, and experiences in authentic places, such as the national parks.
Prior to Chen's talk, Guy Trainin, associate professor in Teaching, Learning and Teacher Education, will present “What does creativity look like in Nebraska schools?” Trainin's pre-talk will be held at 6:30 p.m. in the Lied Center Steinhart Room.
The George Lucas Educational Foundation (GLEF) is a nonprofit foundation that utilizes its multimedia website, Edutopia.org, and documentary films to communicate a new vision for 21st century education. Chen served as executive director of GLEF for 12 years, and during his tenure, GLEF and Edutopia greatly expanded their editorial publishing efforts, including the award-winning Edutopia magazine. Chen’s career has spanned four decades at the intersection of preK-12 education, media and technology. Prior to joining GLEF, he served for 10 years as the founding director of the KQED Center for Education (PBS) in San Francisco. In the 1970s, he was a director of research at Sesame Workshop in New York, helping develop Sesame Street, The Electric Company and 3-2-1 Contact.
Chen has been an assistant professor at the Harvard Graduate School of Education and was one of 35 Fulbright New Century Scholars conducting research on access and diversity issues in schools and universities. He received a bachelor’s degree in social studies from Harvard and a master’s degree and Ph.D. in communication from Stanford. His book “Education Nation: Six Leading Edges of Innovation in our Schools,” was named one of 2010’s best education books by the American School Board Journal.