Art for Art's Sake
A lot of emphasis is placed on the subjects of English and Mathematics in classrooms and rightly so. It is important however, to make sure that students have a well-rounded education to enable them to reach their full potential. The Arts, Social Science and Health are also extremely important areas that should be fully developed in each child.
Take Visual Arts for example. The visual arts are art forms such as ceramics, drawing, painting, sculpture, printmaking, design, crafts, photography, video, filmmaking, and architecture. Sometimes the value of doing art is grossly underestimated. Many people believe that art is just a fun activity and not really that important as a subject. However the world around us is full of wonderful examples of art and design. So what are the benefits of Visual Arts?
In young children, painting, drawing and activities such as clay making are wonderful for developing fine motor skills. Holding a paintbrush, playing with clay and scribbling with colours eventually assist with dexterity in pencil grip for effective writing. Art also assists to develop visual-spatial skills, which are more important than ever. Even toddlers know how to operate a smart phone or tablet, which means that even before they can read, children are taking in visual information.
Art activities help to develop excellent oral language skills. Art encourages talk about colour, design and emotions. Discussing art forms and their own work enables children to build on ideas and strengthens problem-solving and critical-thinking skills. Making decisions and choices in the course of creating art carries over into other areas of life.
Society needs to be continually forward-thinking. Art encourages us to be inventive and to be lateral thinkers. It fires our imaginations and enables unbridled creativity. There is enormous satisfaction in creating an artwork that is totally unique. Technology has made the world a much smaller place; therefore art also helps us to be more culturally aware and sensitive to the wider world around us.
Surely participating in art activities on a regular basis can only have a positive impact on other subject areas in the classroom. Imagination, critical thinking, problem solving, visual/spatial awareness are all vital for effective study across Mathematics and English. What better way to develop these than through the exploration of Visual Arts?
So let’s embrace art for art’s sake. Create something fabulous with your child today!
Karen Carter is Co-Director at Kip McGrath Education Centre Burpengary, providing professional tuition by qualified teachers in Maths and English for Primary and Secondary students. Visit www.kipmcgrath.com.au/burpengary or phone 3888 2332 for a free assessment