I came upon an old email and thought I'd share. :-D
As you know, I'm a dreamer. I teach children everyday to explore their talents, to lead with their hearts. Enthusiasm is a sign of hidden gifts, after all.
A few years back I had a little girlie (second grade) ask to see me after class. She waited until her friends left before she poured out her heart. She explained that I needed to email her dad because he took away her chalk. I plastered on my best teacher face, nodding, wondering all the while what on earth this had to do with me. She became more animated. He wanted her to use paper, but she liked to draw big things on the sidewalk and their driveway, and her dad was getting frustrated because he came home to "messy concrete." He finally told her that she needed to concentrate on something that was more "career" based. After all, you can't really make money drawing pictures on the sidewalk, now can you?
Did I mention she was in second grade?
Anyway, passion turned to tears, and she hoped that I could make him understand that it was really kind of homework from me, and so I gave her a hug and promised to send him an email. That night, I worked on a correspondence explaining that his daughter had come to see me. I agreed that academics were important, but her love of art was a gift that needed to be explored as well.
As for his statement about not being able to make a career with sidewalk chalk ... I never addressed it. Instead, I sent him the following pictures. These are from a famous artist/architect names Kurt Wenner, and he is absolutely one of my favorite artists of our generation. You can find more of his pictures on his website under gallery. It should be noted that all of these were done on sidewalks, in a chalk medium.
And yeah, he's made a pretty good living out of it.
I never got a reply back from the dad, but the next day my little artist ran off the bus and wrapped her arms around me, thanking me for getting her chalk back.