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Reason #20: Helping creative students on the margins

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Reason #20: Artistic opportunities will provide a means of learning and self-expression for creative students struggling at the margins of traditional schooling.
If you think back to your junior high and high school years, you can probably think of at least one student in your grade who seemed to have trouble in classes like science or math, but thrived when it came to art or cooking or shop. Maybe she created award-winning pottery or maybe he could make two pieces of wood fit together more tightly than anyone else in the class. Maybe you were that student.
While many students do just fine in school, there are others who could benefit significantly from even more creative opportunities, both as an alternative to destructive after-school behavior and as a positive outlet for imagination. Learning how to play music, work with wood, make paper or plan a concert can engage teenagers in a way that in-class lectures can’t, teaching them skills and creative ways of thinking that will round them out as individuals and as members of our community. Every teenager has gifts to offer and it is our hope that we can create a space where students who may think they aren’t worth much because they don’t fit in in school will discover a space of welcome with the resources they need to thrive in their own creative, unique ways.