During the Thanksgiving Holiday break and friend and I met up with other friends in London. It was Cindee’s first time there, so I had a great time seeing her face as she came across the fabulous sights (including her first view of Victoria Station). The big treat for the trip was going to see the musical “Wicked”. Let me confess, I don’t really like musicals (even though I have a drama minor). However, if you get a chance, you MUST go see this show. Absolutely a feast for the senses. The sets, the lighting, and the costumes enhanced the great dancing and AMAZING voices. What struck me from the start was that somewhere along the lives of the set, lighting, costume designers lives someone must have said, “You are so good at that, you should try to do that for a living.” Or at least oohed and aahed at their efforts. Then, after the sets, lighting, and costumes were designed, some talented souls had to turn designs into reality. Another gifted group.
That led me to consider how well I do in encouraging students creative efforts. I read Doug Johnson’s blog article “10 Ways to Encourage Creativity in Your Library”. His 10 ways are so simple one wonders why they aren’t used by everyone – all the time. I felt a bit uneasy reading them though. I saw myself squelching creative moments during past conversations with students. I am vowing to try harder to not judge the creativity as long as the purpose of the assignment as been met. I might even be willing to realize the assignment was boring and needed creativity.
All this reflection on my teaching and reading about better ways of connecting with students and then actually changing things has been tougher than I thought it would be. I always thought I was pretty good at making lessons that were interesting. Now I know that I have a long way to go. In the meantime I do so hope that one of the children that comes through my doors will be encouraged enough by me to continue heading down a creative path. What a “Wicked” thought.