The love poem was an imposed quickwrite exercise, BUT the 12-year-old-author’s accompanying artwork spun around the oft-repeated words is her own visual poetry. Her symbolic visual elements betray the seemingly simple (cliche, even) way by which love was portrayed in words.
Are schools killing student creativity? Yes, some schools and some teachers are, according to one student’s rant comparing elementary and high school. As the piece was read as a prompt, the older workshop participants nodded – some indignantly, while others in passive acceptance. One of the younger participants, barely out of elementary school, appeared uninterested in the discussion, but his written quickwrite response says otherwise.
“I really love when I’m thinking outside the box. It makes me more expressive. But to know that fictions and imaginations will be massacred by reality is pain on the back. I just can’t imagine how cruel this is. The only way we could stop them is to speak-out, speak-out for the thoughts that are supposed to be free. I have problems about saying this — but maybe its just the way it is. But it doesn’t mean we should lose hope.”
While these young creatives recognize that maybe “the way it is” is a “pain in the back”, they definitely are not backing-out of trying to change it.