chapter  6
18 Pages

Increasing the Abundance of the World: Young Children and their Drawings

Andrew 1 was one of those children who immediately distinguished himself, as David Hawkins (1974/2002) tells us that children will do, ‘when they’re working at different tasks in different ways’ (p. 90). The fi rst time I visited his classroom, in the fall of 2008, he drew a small pumpkin and presented it to another boy in his class, cheerfully proclaiming, ‘Happy Hallowe’en, Gabriel!’ Andrew’s teacher confi ded to me that Andrew’s family does not recognize Hallowe’en as an event. Yet that morning, Andrew spent much of his time at school drawing pumpkins, turning one into a picture of his father carrying a prize specimen, boasting arms, legs, and hair. Andrew’s mother, visiting the classroom that morning, questioned (disapprovingly) where his interest in Hallowe’en had originated. The center did not offi cially acknowledge Hallowe’en, but the excitement and fun of the event reverberated long before and well after the day itself, among preschool children who may have celebrated it consciously for the fi rst time. It was not at all surprising that a child might be fascinated by the trappings of such an event with traditions that were associated with pleasure and excitement when they were being enjoyed by all the children in his group.