EHHS Creative Club Enhances Students' Creativity
Since 2008, Mr. Doug Gardner has run the Creative Club to allow a creative outlet for students to express themselves without feeling judgment. Originally, the club was just for creative writing and publishing literary magazines. However, since the club is entirely student-driven, the activities are decided by members at the beginning of the school year. In the past, the Creative Club has focused on short stories, making movies, scripts, skits, and collaborating with the media club. Within the past four years, the club has focused on the campaign roleplaying game, "Dungeons and Dragons" (D&D), which is what students want to do the most, despite creative writing sessions also being offered.
"Dungeons and Dragons" brought forth a lot of student interest this year, making it one of the largest campaigns the club has had with about 12 members. A typical meeting, usually on Wednesdays from 2:30-3:30, consists of reviewing detailed notes from previous meetings, members taking out their materials and setting up, and figuring out what actions they might make for that session. D&D is a large story game, which means there are many possibilities for actions to make and paths to go down during the course of a campaign. The ability to be creative in so many ways is what appeals to students, according to Mr. Gardner. He says, “It's one of the things where it's very popular in culture for creative expression, and kids can do that in the club in a safe way, and not feel like they are being weird. There's no stigma, everyone’s accepted, and it gives kids an outlet to be creative.”
Sophomore, Ayvah Vincent joined this year because of the campaign game and how interesting it seemed after seeing a poster for the club. Ayvah’s favorite part, and what she thinks makes the creative club stand out, is being able to create characters and watch them interact with other student's creations as well. Ayvah says, “People taking time out of their day to have fun and experience things they might not have is what makes it special. Also, digging into something that you created and trusting the other characters to see different outcomes makes it a fun, creative experience.” Ayvah really enjoys embracing the creative aspect of the club. She says that the welcoming and fun environment makes the club even better.
Senior, Kayden Patel, agrees and thinks “A typical meeting is pretty chaotic and loud, but so much fun.” Kayden also decided to join the Creative Club because of "Dungeons and Dragons." Their favorite part, like Ayvah, is the creation of their character while also seeing the interactions with others. Kayden also loves the environment that the club provides and says, “The people in the club come from different backgrounds but have one common interest in playing a story adventure game with characters they make, which adds to diversity because the characters they make are also from several different backgrounds and stories.”
The club is recommended for those who enjoy role-playing, games, and action-based stories. Kayden also recommends the club to “people who like being immersed in adventures and building their own characters and playing as them.” Mr. Gardner, and members like Kayden and Ayvah, also agree that getting immersed is a key aspect of the club. They say it’s perfect for people interested in creatively expressing themselves without fear and finding their own creative outlets that they might not have normally found.