Describe the importance of one of the extra-curriculars on your activity list to you.
Here, a door; pale and pink. Two boarded windows painted blue to reflect a cloudless day. Here, the field will be perpetually filled with fragrant blooms because that is how we imagine it. I feel eerily calm as I guide little Grace’s hand within my firm grip. The fat wax crayons we use are cheap but the time is precious.
Every Saturday I visit Grace and nineteen other children who live in the Lekki Motherless Babies’ Home. I initially believed I would teach them art and design but, by the second week, most children were coloring outside the printed outlines of birds and balloons to illustrate unique details that impressed a new belief upon me: beauty lies in the most unexpected places. Such as the dreams of a six year old boy named Timi. I noticed him peeping from the open door of the dormitories while I instructed his peers in the field on nature drawing. Timi’s face bore the set features of mischief and the guardians of the home asserted that he was an extremely aggressive child with behavioural issues yet to be diagnosed. After much persuasion, they grudgingly permitted him to partake in the activities. Timi, ostensibly unmoved by my excited grin, snatched the packet of crayons from my grip and proceeded to hoard them for the entirety of the session while he drew a thicket of concentric circles over the outline of a butterfly. The next week I brought Timi his very own pack of waxy pastels-and a blank drawing sheet. I peered-when he would graciously allow me the view-into his work and made out abstract forms: design in chaos.
From then on, I only provided blank canvases to the children. I seek to foster individuality in art expression, regardless of how far the children’s methods stray from the ‘norm’. In this way I hope to contribute to a future of greater intellectual freedoms and sensibilities; of boundless potentials.