Saturday, July 6, 2013

The boy and the red flower with green stem

Well meaning teachers everywhere stifle children's creativity.  This is a long story written by a teacher.  Please take time to read it. But this is what Picasso said about the whole situation.

Pablo Picasso: Every child is an artist. The problem is how to remain an artist once we grow up.

Once a little boy went to school,  He was quite a little boy. And it was quite a big school. But when the little boy found he could go right to his room by walking right in through the door from the outside, he was happy.
And, the school did not seem quite so big any more.

Once morning when the little boy had been in school a while, the teacher said, "Today, we are going to make a picture."
"Oh, Good,"  thought the little boy.  He liked to make pictures. He could make all kinds: lions and tigers, chickens and cows. He took out his crayons and began to draw.  But the teacher said, "Wait! I will show you how." When everyone was ready, she said, "Now we will make flowers.
"Good," thought the little boy, "I love flowers."

He made beautiful ones with his pink and orange and blue crayon.
The teacher said, "Wait, I will show you how. See the flower is red with a green stem." The little boy looked at his flower and he liked it better than the teacher's, but being a polite child he said nothing.

On another day, the teacher said, "Today we are going to make something with clay."  "Oh good, thought the little boy, I know how to make all kinds of things with clay. I'm going to make a snake and an elephant."  He began to tug on his ball of clay.  The teacher said, "Wait we must wait 'til everyone is ready.  Today, we will make a dish.  "I like dishes," thought the little boy and he made dishes in all sizes and shapes.
"Wait," said the teacher, "I will show you how."  And she did.  Everyone's dish looked just like hers.

Pretty soon the little boy learned to wait and to watch. And, to make things just like the teacher.  He didn't make things of his own any more.

Soon the little boy moved with his family and he went to a different school.
On his very first day in the new school, the teacher said, "Today, we are going to make a picture."  "Oh good," he thought.  And he waited for the teacher to tell him what to do. But she didn't do anything.  She just walked around the room watching the children make pictures.

When she came to the little boy, she said, "Don't you want to make a picture?"  "Yes," said the little boy, "What are we going to make?"
"I don't know until you make it." said the teacher. "How shall I make it," said the little boy. "Why any way you like," said the teacher.  "What colors should I use?" Asked the little boy. "Any color," she said, "If everyone made the same picture, and used the same colors, How would I know who made what and which was which?"

"I don't know," said the  little boy,

                              -----------Helen E. Buckley

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