Updated: Nov 18, 2020
by Jennifer L. Davidson
After chaperoning and instructing at various versions of Young Artist & Young Author workshops, I began to wonder what happened to all the students' knowledge and hard work after the events. Did they continue to work on a story they started? Did they use a new writing tip on an assignment at school? Or did their notebook get kicked under the bed, only to tell their partially written stories to the other forgotten toys who hadn't seen the light of day in years?
As a writer I want to believe students continue to write and apply what they learned to school assignments, BUT as a mother I know what really happens. The creativity that was mustered on that one glorious day is lost. The characters are forgotten. The idea to complete what they started is a distant memory. It makes me cringe just thinking about it.
How can we put an end to this stop-and-go of creative energy? One solution is to offer students the option of working with an author during the workshop. This might just motivate them to keep writing, to keep being creative, to keep focused on finishing a story that others might enjoy. This might also lessen the number of crumpled up pages beneath their bed!