Imagine feeling like everything you do needs to be perfect. Have you ever seen a student crying in the corner because he got a 97? Or had a student ask for extra credit because she earned a 99? Help me change STEM to STEAM by bringing art into my STEM school!
My students attend a highly competitive STEM high school that requires a rigorous admissions process.
Many of them have been preparing for high school for many years and spend their high school years preparing for the SATs in order to earn a perfect score. They put so much stress on themselves to be perfect and attain perfect grades that they struggle with accepting that not everything follows a neat and orderly set of rules. As a result, I want to help them learn how to have fun and engage in the creative process.
"Wreck This Journal" will encourage my students to make a mess and release their tension while being creative. One of the activities asks the writer to tear out a page, throw it out, and accept the loss. When this was presented to a group of students, they became visibly uncomfortable watching the teacher proceed with this activity. It is so important for my students to learn it's OK to make mistakes, to learn from them, and to keep going. In order to innovate and create, they need to be ok with breaking the rules. "Wreck This Journal" will help me lead my students through a variety of much-needed stress relief activities over the course of the year, such as flinging coffee on the pages, writing carelessly, and releasing their inner monologue.
The books will be used all year in my English class to help my students engage in creative ways of relieving their anxiety.
My students are amazing and brilliant.
They go on to write books, start businesses, write apps, and work in Silicon Valley. They will change the world one day. However, they need to learn the importance of making mistakes before they realize this potential.
I hope to use "Wreck This Journal" to bring art and more creativity into the daily lives of my STEM-focused ninth-graders.
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