Mistakes: Make Them Work For You

LauraAll Posts

Lately, I’ve been teaching the girls how to work with mistakes instead of wasting time, and resources to start from scratch. Don’t get me wrong: there are many times when a person has to admit defeat and begin again in order to create something worthwhile. However, there are also many times when we can get creative with our human limitations and mistakes.

* For example, are you ready to scrap your art project due to a misplaced squiggle? I say, add similar squiggles all over the page! You wanted them there all along.

* Did you mis-spell a word in an ink-handwritten letter? Don’t cross it out with ugly bubbles and loops! Instead, mis-spell several other words and jot a note to your reader that you created an interactive educational editing game for her to enjoy after reading your letter! All for free! (Side note: when I taught high school English, I named our school paper “The Rough Draft” and encouraged the students to intentionally throw in edit marks and smudges because I knew there would always be unintentional typos that would otherwise drive me nuts. Oh, we aimed for excellence alright, but we protected our reader’s nerves, too. In my mind, it was such a brilliant idea that I will aim to only ever name any publication “The Rough Draft” from here on out.)

* Don’t like something you drew? There’s nothing a great, big sticker can’t cover up!

* Did your red marker run out of ink while you were half-way finished coloring that big strawberry? Get out the paint or do-a-dots and color the entire strawberry over again. (Then THROW THE MARKER AWAY. I believe in a quick “good bye” to any failing marker. I have no mercy for the less-than-brilliant marker. Nor do I have mercy for the less-than perfect eraser.)

* Did you accidentally tear an edge off of your artwork? Carefully tear around the entire piece to give it that “burnt edges” look.

Do you have any such “make the most of it” tips of your own??