chantal stone photography: the blog

May 18, 2007

Creativity and Children

Filed under: Personal — chantal @ 8:57 am

Michigan Ave, Chicago, USA

Today and tomorrow my daughters will be dancing in their dance recitals. Our whole family is really excited, the girls have worked so hard all year and now they can show it off. This year is particularly exciting since it was Chanel’s first year in junior competition, so she has a lot of dance numbers to perform, and also because it’s Cherie’s first recital ever!

See some pics from their dress rehearsal here.

Creativity and self-expression are celebrated in our house. Of course we want our kids to excel academically, and we expect them to achieve high grades and do well in school (and they do!), but it’s in the field of the Arts that we have really pushed our kids, and they seem to be thriving. During the summer is when we have the most fun: going to museums, doing art projects at home, painting, drawing, reading and writing poetry. And the kids love it! Both girls are dancers, and Chanel will tell you that there’s nothing in the world she’d rather be doing. Sharif plays the violin and is doing so well! He also is loving photography and does exceptionally well at other visual arts. Cherie is still quite young and even though she dances, her path is still yet undefined, but it’s becoming clear that dance and/or music is where her strengths lie.

All good things, indeed.

I just wonder sometimes….many other parents seem to push their kids into the fields of math and sciences, playing sports, etc. And no one direction is better than the other…you point your children to the path in which you are familiar. It just makes me wonder if creativity is an inherited trait or a learned one. There are arguments for both, and evidence also. I like to think that what my husband and I do for our children, expose them to and lead them towards, will benefit them in the far future, no matter what path they take.

My Kids
Sharif, Chanel, & Cherie



  1. If you push kids in a field they’re not comfortable in, you’ll know. artistic talent is inherited and later developed. If you force them though, you’ll pay for it later. My friend was forced into academia because of her eidetic memory and she backlashed severely later on. Or like Kumar said during a university interview, “Yeeeah, just cause you’re hung like a moose doesn’t mean you gotta do porn.”

    You show your kids options and they will eventually take the ones that pull them the most.

    Comment by DAVE — May 18, 2007 @ 11:19 am | Reply

  2. I don’t know that creativity is inherited; however, I think that it is my job, as a parent, to provide my child with opportunities and encouragement for them to find what interest them. After they have found this, then I can offer opportunity for them to explore it to the fullest. The biggest part, for me, is not to judge the activity that they selected as ‘unworthy’.

    I’ve heard parents tell their kids not to go into the arts because you can’t make any money. This may not be true across all areas of art; however, that is not the point. The point in life is to enjoy it, not to make enough money to collect the most stuff.

    My older son, Pedro, loves sports. I mean he is totally enamored of anything that has to do with sports. During his high school years, I tried and tried and tried to get him to consider a career in sports; I hoped that he would consider a career in sports journalism, etc. However, he wanted to be more practical and earn some money. I made the same decision when I went to college, but I had a second love, programming.

    So, over the last 23 years, I have had the opportunity to do what I loved for 8 hours/day and have another love, photography, on the side! 🙂 Those two loves, however, are switching places.

    It sounds like you have your head on straight about your kids. Encourage them to do what brings them joy, not money, and they will have a happy and healthy life.

    Comment by paul — May 20, 2007 @ 7:42 am | Reply

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