To cut-out, or not to cut-out...

September 14, 2017

There seems to be a trend in early education that providing cut-outs for children to color in, and similar such activities, is allowing a child to express their creativity. Yes, but it is very limited for it does not promote the individual child's ongoing creative process, and sense of innate creativity to emerge. The child is being taught that their creativity is reliant on outside input, or rather that creativity needs to be put into them. So the concept of the art, the origin of the art, has to belong to the child, which consequently will enable his or her individuality to flourish. 


Most of us adults feel disconnected from our creativity, the professional just as much, and in some cases more so, as the amateur or 'non-artist'. This disconnect to our natural creative inheritance, as evidenced through archeological excavations of prehistoric sites, I feel lessens each individual's opportunity for personal growth, and creative contribution to society.


Young children, without instruction, do not have this disconnect with their creativity. It is as much part of them, as learning to walk and speak. There is no separation from when they are being creative, and when they are not. They just do what they were naturally born to do.


The intent behind those seemingly simplistic scribbles, regardless whether a young child is aware of it at the time of making them, is the idea that the act of creation, naturally involves the act of giving. A young child freely creates a painting in order to give it to someone, most often his or her parents, family & friends.  Creation and giving are intrinsically linked for the child. 


So it seems that we adults, with our own stifled creativity, could learn from the young child if we only step out the way, and simply provide the materials, freedom and support. And if many a young child's sense of creative identity was encouraged, with this sense of giving, surely we would leave the world a better place?





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