Art is a class for slackers. Not only slackers, of course, but usually if you are signed up for an art elective you assume the slacker role. The basic art class contains around 95% slackers who cruise their way through papier mache and primary colors. But art classes aren’t just for kids who want an easy A. Art class gives kids a much needed break in a hectic and boring academic schedule. In high school, art is the Tylenol for a total core-class migraine. There has been one semester in my entire high school career when I was not enrolled in an art class, and instead in Civics. Every single day, as I began to doze off and my teacher’s monotone and tedious voice lulled me to sleep, I yearned to be in the art wing where I would be not passed out on my desk but engaged in self expression. In art class, you don’t have to care about your grade. You just have to care about your art.
Art class has provided me with more opportunities than I thought it could offer. Competitions and scholarships, yes. Creative expression, yes. But I believe in art class because it’s one of the core reasons I actually had fun in high school. I’ve had opportunities to meet a lot of the people who mean the most to me today, and also to meet people who are just straight up fascinating and fun to be around. There was Jay, who wore huge headphones and first showed me my now-favorite ceramic glaze. There was Jody, who told extravagant lies and talked in various foreign accents each day. There was Mz. B, the 3-D art teacher, who told us stories about dead cats in her freezer and her grandchildren. Everyone you meet in art class will be interesting, I promise you. And not only did I have fun with these people while painting watercolor or creating clay characters, I learned from them. I learned how to be myself, I learned others’ experiences, and I learned to express myself. I believe in art class because I believe creativity is more important to learn than the periodic table. I believe in art class because it teaches the soul. I believe in art class because it has taught me more than math or science ever could.
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