February 2, 2012

explore, imagine and dream...

"Lila"
12 x 16
Author Peggy Orenstein writes that "Children are naturally driven to understand their world. They live by that incessant creativity-inspiring "why? Why does the grass grow? Why is the sky blue? Why can't I fly? and to answer these questions, they experiment, imagine and explore. Their minds are free to wander and wonder." And this remains true until they enter school. Once they become first or second graders, they begin to compare their work with that of their peers when Ms. Orenstein points out that "Suddenly there are right and wrong answers. Expressing their own tentative understanding of an idea becomes less important than figuring out what the teacher makes of it" and the rigors of school replace the why questions with "what do you want me to do and how do you want me to do it?"

If you broach this topic with adults, you will discover that almost all of us have a story to share where this truth played out in our own lives. As children we asked WHY? As adults, parents, grandparents, caregivers and teachers, we are beginning to ask other questions.
WHO will be at the forefront of discovering new paths? WHAT will future classrooms look like as we dare to imagine better solutions? WHAT innovative approaches to learning can we implement now? HOW can we honor creativity and wonder? HOW can we provide a nurturing environment that encourages experimenting, imagining and exploring, so all minds are free to wander and wonder?

5 comments:

Nancy Van Blaricom said...

Lovely painting of a curious girl. Her dress is wonderfully rendered. I love how you have shown the sunlight hitting her dress, face and hair. The land that I see in the distant is wonderfully done also... I can see the shore line if I look. The sand in shadow ... Yummy! I really like this one Faye.

Linda Popple said...

Lovely little girl and you did a wonderful job capturing the light and her expression. Your post is thought provoking, too. :-)

Marian Fortunati said...

Sadly true... I wonder how we could change that.

I think that even as artists we tend to compare ourselves to those we revere. Wish there was a way we could be in our own world art=wise ... Oh I suppose there is ... but even if we just like our own work, would anyone else??? Or does it even matter?

Your little girl is lovely... Someone you know and love???

Debi Murray said...

Beautiful painting - very endearing! I wonder what's going on in her little mind. Love the light play and shadows. This is one of my faves!

Paula K. Cravens said...

This is a lovely fresh painting. I was very shy and intimidated as a child and worked hard at "performing" well at school. It wasn't until I was 16 and my wonderful English teacher, Mrs. Baretta, helped me realize..I could have independent thoughts(!), not just memorize facts and cough them back up.