The idea for “Bulldogs Unleashed” came to mind when I was coming into Meadville as a freshman and I saw a sign that reads, “Welcome to Meadville: The Home of Bulldog Hockey.” The sign displays the eight years the team has won state championships and immediately I thought, “How can such a small town in the middle of nowhere, have such a great hockey team?”
I found the answer to that question while making this documentary. The Bulldog hockey program is able to continue their success each year because of the strong family relationships that foster growth for the players both on and off the ice and create strong bonds between the community and team that keep the families attached to the program. I will never forget one of the best experiences of my college career which was the time I spent with the Bulldog Hockey family.
Freeing the Individual: The Benefits of the Creative Arts in the Education of Youth
“Freeing the Individual: The Benefits of the Creative Arts in the Education of Youth” examines how a true creative arts program can aid educators in maximizing a student’s potential for learning and personal growth. Beginning by briefly uncovering the reasons why the arts have become so marginalized in our culture, this essay then establishes an ideal creative arts program, which contains two key elements: a creative and experience based teaching style that focuses on the direct engagement of the whole student, and a child-centered approach that respects the student as a unique and dynamic individual (rather than revolving around a static and/or standardized curriculum which assumes all children are the same). Other valuable ways the arts can be utilized in education (special education for children with unique challenges or therapy, for example), as well as a major empirical study of how the creative arts can affect the quality of a child’s educative experience, are also discussed. A 26-minute documentary, entitled “Creating Landscapes: Serious Play,” which examines a children’s creative arts program in Meadville, Pennsylvania, also accompanies the text, portraying the program as a case study for a true and effective creative arts experience.