One Great Inspirational Message from a Student

At our district's monthly board meetings, we like to involve students as much as possible. One of the things we do at each meeting is have a high school student deliver an inspirational message. The students chosen are pretty much given free reign over the message they wish to share.

Last month, we had a wonderful student deliver a wonderful  message that I have to share with you. One our juniors, Elise, decided she wanted to talk about the value of the arts in education.

First, a little about Elise. While she is only a junior, she's already made the All-State band two years in a row - as first chair oboe! She's also a gifted singer earning state honors in solo and ensemble contest. But, above all that, she's an extremely nice young lady who is very respectful and incredibly smart.

So, Elise is my "guest blogger" today. I hope you enjoy her message and if you have anything you like to share with Elise about her wonderful message please send me an e-mail ( and I'll forward it to her.

Here's her message .....

“Music gives a soul to the universe, wings to the mind, flight to the imagination, and life to everything.” What was true for Plato in Ancient Greece is true even today. Not only music, but all of the arts affect us in a powerful way that is hard to completely understand.  
I was recently inspired by the decision of the Texas Legislature to protect the requirement of a fine arts credit for high school graduates. It’s inspiring to think that our state values the arts, which are sometimes sacrificed for more “practical” courses such as math and science. 
But if there’s anything I’ve learned from music and theatre and painting class, it’s that the arts make us human. Art is a way of life. The appreciation of beauty and variety, innovative ideas, profound thoughts expressed without words, and a reflection of the world around us are found in works from Prokofiev to Pollock. Music is as ancient as the paintings on the walls of our cave-dwelling ancestors and the bone flutes buried beneath eons of history. 
I’ve been so lucky to be able to explore the arts in school and out of school. Arts education enriches the lives of millions of children around the globe. It teaches us coordination, attention to detail, listening skills, timing, and organization. More importantly, it builds confidence, dedication, perseverance, and respect. Theatre, music, and other performing arts are about more than just the individual. It’s about teamwork, cooperation, and moving together toward a common goal. The arts also allow us to enjoy the now and live in the moment. A concert is never the same twice, and any particular scene in a play only lasts a few minutes. 
But most of all, art cannot be “solved” like an equation or “discovered” like a new particle. Art changes. It evolves. Robert Engman once said that, “A piece of art is never a finished work. It answers a question which has been asked, and asks a new question.” 
I’ll leave you with two thoughts: 
What new things can we discover through art? And what new questions lie on the horizon?

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