Tuesday, October 23, 2012

The Fish that Got Away

I'm not the type of parent who micro-manages.  I know too many parents who are constantly in their childrens' faces, managing every second of their day, obsessing about their appearance, and making every decision their child needs to make.  I take more of a laid-back approach, allowing my children to make choices - sometimes the wrong ones - so they can learn and grow.

The same is true for projects.  With three children, one in his senior year, I've seen my fair share of projects.  I don't micro-manage school projects either.  I'll help with ideas, buy supplies, help with research, if asked, but I don't take over the project and the ultimate product - good or bad - is up to the child.  I can't tell you how many times I have seen other children's projects - especially for science fairs - where it is 100% obvious that the parent did most, if not all of the work.  That annoys me to no end!

So now take everything I've said above and apply it to projects that involve artwork and twist it inside out and backwards and throw it in the trash.

I LOVE ART PROJECTS.  Unfortunately my children did not inherit that gene.

A few weeks ago, The Crazy Clown brought home an art project where he had to research the history of mandalas.  He had to come up with a theme for a mandala, look at examples, plan and draw a mandala, color it, write an essay about it, and present it to the class.

As soon as I saw the paperwork, I immediately got out my mandala drawing book because I have one and I am a geek like that.  Long story short:

Instead of "helping" my child, I became a complete control freak, monster parent who obsessed over the project and did the ENTIRE thing. (He chose the fish/ocean theme). 

The Crazy Clown: "Wow, Mom.  That is freaking awesome!
It's so awesome that if I turn it in, I will definitely get a F.
  My teacher knows I could never do anything like that!"
So yeah.  NO restraint when it comes to art projects.

The Crazy Clown ended up creating his own mandala.  He traced a dinner plate for the outside circle and traced a coffee mug for the inner circle.  The mug handle made the circle warped, but apparently that was ok with him.  He used a crappy blue Crayola marker to color some water and used an orange marker to make dots to represent fish.  I pretty much kicked his ass in mandala drawing.

Since you're begging, I'll post one more picture of my beautiful artwork, but then I have to go get started on the clay pot for the Ancient Islamic Artwork project.  It's due on Friday and I'm running out of time!