The Value of the Creativity
23 January 2019
I have had the pleasure of working with Jigsaw Arts for a number of years as a singing, drama and dance teacher, and in the last year have become the manager for the brilliant, Jigsaw Balham. I have been engaged with the arts since the age of 2 and a half and have worked with children for many years as a performing arts facilitator and teacher. Having recently completed an Applied Theatre MA at The Royal Central School of Speech and Drama, I have developed a greater understanding for the need and value of the arts. During my MA I studied the impact the arts can have on a child’s education, social media and pop culture’s affect on secondary school students as well as the joy cultivated through arts and culture.
I think it is growing ever important for us to embrace children’s creative minds and give them the space to grow and develop. Jigsaw provides an inclusive and welcoming space, where children can explore and feel valued in a place where everyone belongs. Utilising professional teachers who specialise in their art, not only do the children have the chance to engage with creativity, but they have the opportunity to learn an art form to a high level from an inspiring teacher.
In the last year, I have watched a number of children at both Jigsaw Balham and Jigsaw Ilford grow in confidence. One specific child really struggled on her first Saturday to even tell other children her name and didn’t want to leave her parents side. In the space of a few months, I have watched her confidence grow, to see her put herself on the front row in the dance in our recent show. Through attending our weekly sessions, the difference is astounding. I have witnessed lots of children go through this, and always have parents express how much the few hours we have with their children impact their child’s life. The children have the opportunity to build friendships with children of a similar age outside of school, and role model for the younger children.
Singing, dancing and playing different characters gives our children the chance to develop valuable skills unique to the craft. Pride, joy, happiness and fun are promoted through every minute of a Jigsaw class, and children feel leaving energised and enthusiastic, their mind flowing with creativity. As well as the value of joy, children are offered choice and given responsibility for their engagement. Problem solving, teamwork, spatial awareness, self-awareness and time management are all pivotal in the production of drama, dance and art, and are skills, which are key to being successful as they grow up and become valued members of society. As well as expanding the creative mind, taking part in arts activities can foster benefits of health and wellbeing, improving body awareness, spatial awareness, breathing and posture.
Jigsaw is not about building the next west end stars, but instead about giving children the space to explore who they are, make friends and build up life-long transferable skills. Expanding on the innate feelings of play children explore in their formative years of childhood, Jigsaw offer children an authentic experience where they can feel they have a place of worth and be proud of their creative skills. As a teacher and manager, I take the time to get to know each individual child and parent and show a genuine interest in the wonderful stories they share with me. I enjoy watching the children really come alive from the help of our wonderful teachers and assistants.
Jigsaw offers more than just singing, dance and drama, it offers a sense of family, joy and pride.