For the last two weeks, my mom taught art classes for kids at a nearby museum, and I got to be her paid assistant! That was a blast. The first week we made books, and the second it was imaginary things/creatures (the most fun). It’s heart-wrenching, meeting kids from broken homes, bashing heads with a few difficult-yet-lovable ones, wanting to take home the sweetest little shy ones, and then saying goodbye, hoping to see them next year.
Some of those kids acted like they’d never played with paper and glue before. Some liked to copy the examples, while others went off in wild directions with painful enthusiasm. We had to go from saying, “Don’t use all the pipe cleaners; someone else might need some!” to “I can’t tell you exactly how to do it. Be creative, and use more paint!”
Among other things, they made a multitude of pipe-cleaner princesses, robots made from tin cans, a mermaid playing basketball, a UFO invading a castle while the people were out shopping (one of my favorites), and a wardrobe door that opened into a forest of popsicle-stick trees and a sky of white button-stars on a felt background. And it was a delight to see tables and floor covered with so many feathers, beads, buttons, sequins, googly eyes, pieces of cardstock and tissue paper, pencils, scissors, and web-like strings from the glue gun (operated by myself, with peeling fingers and huge popularity as reward), that one could tell at a glance fun was had by all. Then there was cleaning up on Friday. But t’was more than worth it! In a few weeks I’ll be helping some other teachers with two more weeks of it, but I don’t think it could be quite as enjoyable as doing it with my own dear creative mum. :-)