Arts and Academic Achievement in Kids

NEW Course : Art4Tots starts January 15, 2019, 10.30 to 11.30am.In recent years, school curriculums shifted heavily to core subjects, math, reading, writing. What about the arts? Creative activities are building blocks of child development and learning, to create and appreciate visual art is more important than ever as children grow up in an age heavily dependent on technology. Its time for balance.  

Developmental Benefits:

Motor Skills + Language Development Decision Making + Visual Learning + Inventiveness + Cultural Awareness = Improved Academic Performance: Studies show a correlation between art and other achievements. Studies have shown that young people who participate regularly in the arts (three hours a day on three days each week through one full year) are four times more likely to be recognized for academic achievement, to participate in a math and science fair or to win an award for writing an essay or poem than children who do not participate.

girls on desk looking at notebook FullSizeRender 6 IMG_0393

Motor Skills: Many motions involved in making art — holding a paintbrush or scribbling with a crayon, are essential to growth of fine motor skills. Developmental milestones around age three include drawing a circle and beginning to use safety scissors. Around age four, children may be able to draw a square and cut straight lines with scissors, improving dexterity prior to  learning to write.

Language Development: For very young children, making art—or just talking about it—provides opportunities to learn words for colors, shapes and actions.

Decision Making: According to reports, art education strengthens problem-solving and critical-thinking skills. The experience of making decisions and choices in the course of creating art carries over into other parts of life.

Visual Learning: Drawing, sculpting with clay and threading beads on a string all 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, kids are taking in visual information.

“Parents need to be aware that children learn a lot more from graphic sources now than in the past,” says Dr. Kerry Freedman, Head of Art and Design Education at Northern Illinois University.

Inventiveness: When kids are encouraged to express themselves and take risks in creating art, they develop a sense of innovation that will be important in their adult lives.

Cultural Awareness: Aesthetics of toys—the color, shape, texture of the hair,  teaches children to recognize the choices an artist can make in portraying a subject and helps kids understand the concept that what they see may be someone’s interpretation.

 

Excerpts from The Importance of Art in Child Development By Grace Hwang Lynch

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