Some schools have begun to cut arts programs. This is due to a lack of understanding about the importance that art has on the development of a child. While core subjects like math and history are important, there are benefits that art provides for a young child’s brain that cannot be substituted with anything else.
Gross and Fine Motor Development
Children can develop their motor skills through art; fine arts like coloring, sculpting, and assembling can aid in the development of fine motor skills. Although the first drawings of children may not look like much, a child’s drawing is connected to thoughts and images that enable them to relate to the world around them. The coordination between what is seen and what the hand does prepares children to be more perceptive when it comes to shapes, numbers, and colors. This type of development passes solely through the outlets of art and creativity.
More physical arts like dancing help young children to develop gross motor skills, as well; relating movement to music or simple rhythms allows a child to fine-tune their coordination.
Culture and History
History is intricately interwoven between the different art periods. Through learning about the different ages that art has evolved through, children can establish a focal point through which they can understand the progression of history through various cultures and regions.
On a less academic level, children can learn to understand the relationship between expression and creativity and how such things differ based on background, geographical location, religion, and more. Creativity is necessary for the development of empathy and an appreciation for cultural differences.
Art and creativity create a base for learning to find solutions to problems and thus be successful in endeavors in adulthood. Artistic participation builds a sense of confidence that can later become a base for successful innovations and problem-solving. Taking creative approaches to problems can lead to innovation; without innovation, change and future success are unlikely, on both an individual and a societal level. Cultivating creativity at an early age will aid in critical thinking and problem-solving skills as children learn to approach problems from various angles in order to find the best solutions.
Art therapy is one example of the importance art has for an individual’s well-being. Art is closely related to the improvement of mental health. Giving children the chance to be more creative and part of an artistic atmosphere can improve their overall mental and emotional health. Creating and viewing art is one way for a child to develop a solid foundation in motor skills, emotional management, and abstract thinking.
Creativity, both relating to the creation of art or exposure to art, is necessary for healthy cognitive growth and proper development.