To all the high school students out there, or to those who have graduated and remember what high school was like, I want to ask you something. When was the last time you wrote a creative piece in class? When was the last time you wrote something for your English teacher where you talked about yourself, your interests, your drive, your story? When did a teacher last place hundreds of points of value on a writing piece that showed your skill in bending reality, in shaping it to your own unique will?
I am in high school right now, and I can’t remember the last time I got to write and turn in something other than an analytical piece, in which I absolutely had to abide by the “no opinions” and “no first person” rules. I am a writer…I convey my thoughts best through writing be it poetry, an essay, or a blog post. Creative pieces give me purpose, they give me an outlet, they are where my best work is found. A report on 19th century literature might paint me as an unskilled writer, but ask me to write you a short story and you would think otherwise.
My problem lies in the fact that high schools are killing this creativity in students. High schools develop analytical skills but throw creative projects off to the side by either not assigning any, or giving them very little value. I know many think that school is for learning skills to help in college, in the real world, as if creative work isn’t part of that skill set. But my god are they wrong…
We live in a world where problems arise faster than they can be solved. Our world needs its next working generation to be able to think in abstract ways, to see the world completely different than others, to embrace individual thought and perception. Time and time again in classrooms, we analyze something that has already been written, or identify a technique the author has already used…but god do I miss how refreshing it felt to make something for once. To give other people a small glimpse into the kaleidoscope of my mind, and to show them that I see the world in misty shape-shifting ways, in colors that don’t even exist.
Friends, please understand that diversity is the most beautiful thing we have in this world. We yearn to go to faraway places because they look different. We can spend hours in front of a screen watching Planet Earth because of the pure, untouched, natural diversity that our world has been blessed with. We see these impossibly successful people on television and dream of being like them…but they stand out because they are different. They succeeded because they saw the world differently, from a different angle and with different structure than what their peers saw. Isn’t this what schools should cultivate?
Creativity, diversity, individuality…these traits are what make our world a good place. They are what make people successful; they are what make people beautiful. They help us advance, they help us innovate, they give us purpose and a pure, personal motivation that cannot come from a paycheck or a grade.
Diversity is, and will forever be, the most beautiful thing we have.
– Ro ♥