Adult coloring books are “the thing” right now. For Chanukah my mother gave me one of these. Now my mother NEVER let me have a coloring book growing up and so this was the first one I have ever owned.
Because I have “learning disabilities” my brain simply gets tired faster then most other people’s brain. I decided to bring my coloring book to school this week for something to do when I have study halls and when my brain needs a break. For an entire school week now, I have colored in my book at various times for long and short periods of time and I have yet to complete one page!
On Monday when I was coloring a memory from junior high haunted me. One day in junior high I was in my study hall, and that particular day the teachers had “overdosed my brain on information.” My brain was tired and I could not focus on school work and I pulled out my loved sketch book. After only a few moments of sketching, the teacher supervising me noticed. When the teacher noticed, they “suggested”/ told me to work on something profitable. This disturbed me emotionally. I put away my sketch book and pretended to study for an upcoming test while trying to hide my tears.
Now to most people this doesn’t sound like a big deal. However, to me it was. I felt punished for my brain not having the compacity of my peers. I pretty much wasted the entire class period because I was staring at my book being too upset to study.
Telling a student to put their sketch book away isn’t a big deal; however, to a dyslexic student it is so much more. Generally, people who have dxylixia are creative. Therefore, we need a creative outlet when our brains cannot handle academics. I’m not a trouble maker at school but I do need to use my creativity in different forms every once in awhile. I am a musician, writer, and artist and I use these forms of art to relax and distract myself from the world. It’s no wonder why I need to occupy some of these elements during school.
Dear Teacher, please let me draw during free time. My brain functions different then yours. I cannot be fed information for seven hours a day and be expected obtain what you have taught me. There comes a point when I cannot soak in what you are teaching me. My belly gets full when I am fed; my brain does the same thing. Please let me be creative and encourage me to pursue my creative outlets during the little bit of free time that you give us. Yes, my grades probably suck but studying when I’m “studied out” will not do any good for me. I do not draw during class, I do not work on Lama-Leah during class, I don’t write poetry or short stories during class, I study and listen to you during class. However, during my study halls or free time, I sometimes simply just need a break. What is so bad about that?