21 Apr Creativity and the Beauty of Self-Expression: Part 1
“Creativity is contagious, pass it on” —Albert Einstein
Children and adolescents are curious. They are natural question-askers, and explore the world around them with a sense of wonder that seems both passionate and contagious. Through reflecting on my own adolescent years and hearing stories from my mom and her friends about their children, I’ve come to understand that a child’s mind is a chamber of creativity.
But do we actually see this creativity in the everyday lives of those children we champion? Why is it important to encourage them to express themselves? And, what are new ways that we can be creative with them? These are questions we will be exploring over the next few weeks in a series of blog posts, “Creativity and the Beauty of Self-Expression”.
My ten-year old sister Grace spends a lot of free time decorating her bedroom. Put simply, the room embodies Grace’s boundless passion for making things. The blue-painted walls of the small space are covered with popsicle stick-framed photos and abstract water color paintings. A handmade mobile with a notepad and pen hang from the ceiling, and underneath sits a small desk covered in markers, handwriting practice sheets, and journals. The right side of the room is a reading haven, and a stuffed bookcase stands next to an equally stuffed reading chair. Grace recently created a multi-level dollhouse out of shoe boxes, and peering inside you can see the detailed themes she’s designed each room to bare. Thus you could say that Grace doesn’t just think “outside of the box”; she also explores, rips apart, and creates with the box.
I admire how Grace explores her creativity in ways that are satisfying and thrilling to her. While my mom, dad, teenage sister Ella, and I express ourselves through art and writing, Grace has set her own standard of creative self-exploration that is totally her own.
With Grace’s story in-mind, I’d define creativity to be the act of expressing oneself and ideas through making things. It’s an act of self-love and resilience, and oh is it fun!