Why Art and Creativity are Important for Kids
Schools that eliminate art programs are doing so at their peril. No one questions foundation subjects like reading and math for the development of competent citizens, but not enough people are inquiring about how important art and creativity are for kids.
The importance is paramount. Arts and creativity nurture well-being and assist learners in creating connections between subjects.
Fine and Gross Motor Skills
Toddlers who pick up a crayon or a marker and begin drawing have initiated the development of their motor skills. While it may seem that these random scribbles mean nothing, children connect their drawings with thought and narration, and their bodies begin developing motor skills. Eventually scribbles become fine lines or bold strokes, and words become stories that appear on the page.
The fine motor and gross motor skills learned in artistic pursuits, such as drawing and dance, help prepare the brain for further learning by connecting tactile and visual modalities.
Motor skills prepare children for each stage in their development as learners.
Early Childhood Central divides drawing skills into pre-schematic and schematic stages, both of which are important arenas a child must master before becoming a teenager. By developing eye-hand coordination and fine motor skills, children begin to prepare for understanding complex ideas like relationships, shapes, and numbers.
This development is not possible without the arts and creativity.
History and Culture
Formal art study requires that students understand time periods and how these ages impact culture.
When studying music, theatre, and dance, pupils take an in-depth look at history. In doing so, they develop an awareness of culture, and they especially learn how cultures change from region to region and across time.
Problem Solving Ability
Art and creativity teach problem-solving, which is a critical skill for success in life. By engaging in artistic activities and study, children develop confidence in their abilities, and they learn how to innovate.
The arts encourage risk-free exploration, and it is this freedom that builds confidence.
A strong correlation exists between art and mental health.
Therapists have used creative arts like poetry, journaling and visual media in assisting patients with mental health. The arts are a vehicle for emotion, and they can also be a self-soothing activity that allows the creator to work through ideas and issues.
Without access to art and creative endeavors, your child may not be building the foundation needed for motor skills, abstract thinking or healthy emotional responses.