"To enrich the lives of children and families" is the mission of the youth museum where I work. This mission has deep spiritual roots that support and nurture qualities like creativity, confidence, curiosity, intelligence, love of learning, appreciation for and understanding of others. It endeavors to move visitors to a higher, better vision of themselves and others.

I believe strongly in honoring the creative potential of everyone, because I perceive each visitor as an individual made in God's likeness. Effective educational environments often acknowledge individuality by providing opportunities for learning in a variety of ways. When I am developing exhibits for the museum, I strive to honor his diversity. Educational theories say people learn and do things differently according to individual strengths, learning preferences, and personality types. I like to consider these differences as an expression of the "diversities of gifts" that the Apostle Paul speaks about so eloquently in the Bible (see I Cor. 12:4—11).

One example of honoring creativity in young people developed as part of an art exhibit I planned. It's a metal sculpture wall that allows visitors to manipulate and move large, anodized aluminum, magnetic shapes and words to express their own creative visions. Nine artistically talented high-school youth were chosen to work on the project with two professional artists. The artists had worked on similar national projects, but they had never collaborated with anyone in this way before.

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It does matter!
September 4, 2000

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