I believe creative thinking (and memory) are based on associations:
“Developing creativity is MORE than teaching creative skills, it is finding solutions to new problems by reevaluating WHAT IS KNOWN into ‘illogical’ or divergent arenas and envisioning formerly unknown relationships among different domains of experience.” CREATIVITY by Cropley
I believe a classical education is the best way to have a solid foundation of “what is known“. This enables students to become successful 21st century problem solvers! .