Following on the theme of behaviour from my last blog – and the fact that I have just read a batch of children’s stories for the #inspiringcostakids competition – I was thinking of the importance of writing and drawing, whether it be a child holding the pencil or an adult.
I have always said, ‘it empties the thoughts from ones’ head,’ and indeed it does.
Creativity is something within us all. It just needs some encouragement to tease it out. It’s amazing what thoughts and imagination are harboured within. Then of course there is the other side of creativity which opens the door of healing as emotions are released. Many great artists, musicians and writers have birthed their talents through the pain in their lives.
Basically creativity is a form of self expression, is healthy and should be encouraged.
A great friend of mine speaks often about how the children and young adults in the secure therapeutic unit where she worked, were encouraged to express themselves through metaphor, storytelling and art.
Creativity is by nature therapeutic. Storytelling should be non-threatening and non judgemental, but can be used to identify anxiety, fear, depression and other potential problems.
Dance, drama and music can be such a release from pent-up frustrations and anxiety.
That leads me back to the #inspiringcostakids writing competition for 9 to 13 year olds. The kids were given prompts in the form of lead paragraphs and told to base their story on the given paragraph. ( a minimum of 500, maximum of 800 words.) I was in awe of the ideas that flowed, with so many different story-lines evolving from the same beginning. It was interesting, though challenging at times as the children revealed their thoughts. Honest but some rather darker than I expected.
It conjured up images of past school visits when we have talked about the issues of the street children. A phenomenon addressed in the Chavos Novels. Homelessness might be the fundamental factor, but school children revealed with amazing honesty some of the issues that they had dealt with themselves. A few teacher referrals for further discussion were suggested.
Stuff happens whether you live on the streets or suburbia. We must always be ready to discern and open to others needs, especially children.
Moving on, I’m now looking forward to the 2018 competition which will be launched in January, and I wait with anticipation to see what story lines we have next year. That said, I’ve not chosen the lead paragraphs yet, but they will once again be based on the Chavos Novels.
On that note I will do a separate blog in the new year to talk about the winning entries, until then it’s shrouded in secrecy.
So whether you feel like writing a story, brainstorming some ideas or singing into your mobile phone. Be creative and get those thoughts out of your head.