September 15ish is International Dot Day, which is a celebration of creativity inspired by the story, The Dot by Peter H. Reynolds. One of Peter’s mantras that he earnestly bestows upon both adults and children whom he encounters is “Make your mark.”
The other night Peter H. Reynolds was hosting the #K12artchat, a Twitter chat for art educators, and one of the questions posed was why is it important for students to make their mark?
In my opinion, one reason it is important for students AND adults to make their marks is because the marks we make, the work we do, the work we put into some kind of shareable form functions as guideposts that lead to us to finding our authentic voice.
Constantly trying things out, experimenting, and exploring ideas, techniques, voice, and scale is how we learn what we truly want to say or do and how to say it or do it best. Making our marks and doing work is how our work gets better, clearer and stronger. When our work is better, when it’s clearer, when it’s strong, is when our work has the potential to be more impactful.
Once we have found our voice, and found what and how to communicate, our marks act as guideposts for others, so that they can find and share their unique voices. Marks add up.
Start making your marks. Help your students to make theirs. Let’s see where they lead, let’s see what they add up to. My guess is it will be something worth seeing.