Creativity and innovation are essential components of human progress and development. Throughout history, creative thinkers and innovators have driven major advances in science, technology, medicine, art, and culture. They have revolutionized the way we live, work, and interact with the world around us. Creativity is more important today than ever as we face a complex future full of uncertainty and possibility.
World Creativity and Innovation Day (WCID) is an annual celebration on April 21st to raise awareness about the importance of innovation in solving global challenges. It reaffirms 17 central principles agreed upon by the United Nations for the growth and happiness of humanity.
At ABA Centers of America, our mission is to spread awareness about autism spectrum disorder (ASD) and the many wonderful qualities those on the spectrum possess. Chief among these is innovation, the ability to think differently about the world’s problems and find solutions where others can’t.
Several WCID tenets overlap with the cause of autism awareness. These are:
- Creativity is a fundamental human right.
- Creativity and innovation can be learned and taught.
- Creativity and innovation are not limited to the arts and sciences but can be found in all areas of human activity.
- Creativity and innovation are fueled by collaboration and diversity.
- Creativity and innovation require investment in education, research, and development.
- Creativity and innovation should be celebrated and recognized.
- Creativity and innovation should be inclusive and accessible to all.
- Creativity and innovation can promote cultural understanding and social cohesion.
Those on the spectrum have been among history’s greatest innovators. We’ve already highlighted a few modern examples, but medical historians believe figures like Mozart and Einstein could have been on the spectrum before an official diagnosis existed. A large part of ensuring this talent can bloom is understanding that creativity, innovation, and autism can go hand-in-hand with supporting inclusion and awareness. This article spotlights how and why those on the spectrum have incredible things to celebrate on World Creativity and Innovation Day.
1. A Spectrum of Creativity
From the STEM fields to the arts, those on the spectrum have succeeded astonishingly, partly due to the unique qualities of ASD. Neurodivergent folk process and see the world differently than their neurotypical colleagues. ASD is a spectrum condition, so not everyone will outwardly exhibit divergence. Still, those diagnosed with autism can possess incredible memory, an outstanding ability to focus, and enhanced information processing.
These advantages can amount to remarkable feats of creativity. Research has shown that those on the spectrum exhibit lateral thinking, sometimes called divergent thinking. They discover innovative and unusual ways to tackle problems that others miss. In autism research, this is called “the paradox of creativity.” Those diagnosed with autism have difficulty placing their experiences within contexts, meaning they struggle to relate emotions and objects to their environment. However, this allows them to break down and identify elements in ways no one previously considered.
For example, if you scribble random lines on a piece of paper and tell a child diagnosed with autism to incorporate them into a drawing, you might be surprised. The drawing could be something you never considered because neurotypical thinking tends to focus on the fact that these are random lines not meant to add up to anything. To someone on the spectrum, they could be part of an interesting design. World Creativity and Innovation Day celebrates this unique processing of information, which is richly abundant in the autism community.
2. World Creativity and Innovation Day and ABA Centers of America
Part of the UN’s mission on WCID is to recognize that creativity can be learned and taught with the proper inclusive educational resources. ABA Centers of America agrees, and we have the resources necessary to ensure every child on the spectrum can succeed. We offer Applied Behavior Analysis (ABA) therapy, the gold standard in autism care.
The point of ABA is to teach those diagnosed with autism life skills that can maximize their happiness and independence. We bring out their innate abilities while shoring up areas of weakness, such as communication or other challenging behaviors. Expert therapists accomplish this through individualized plans and positive reinforcement. Growth occurs not only because they are learning but because they receive rewards for improving.
You might have heard, “It takes a village.” This phrase also applies to innovation. Every invention and breakthrough has a thousand hands pitching in. Education is the pillar upon which creativity stands, and this is what we offer at ABA Centers of America.
Don’t hesitate to reach out for a free consultation to discuss how we can help you and your family. Call 844-923-4222 or message us online on our website—And Happy World Creativity and Innovation Day to you and your loved ones on the spectrum!