Art is vitally important for a child’s education development
- Art education trains brain development, especially the functions of the right brain, which caters for creativity and intuition.
- Through the development of art skills, one can stimulate other fields of learning.
- Students able to acquire a wide range of positive effects through high quality artistic activities, include the development of creative and thinking skills, better self-expression, painting and music appreciation, learning other cultures, and their products to bring them personal satisfaction and fulfillment. (Critical, Links Harland).
- The experience of art cannot be mimicked by others.
- Art brings us pleasure and meaning into our daily life.
- The understanding of art and its interpretation of the world is just as important as those made by science and history.
- Through art, students developed their own cultural awareness and appreciation for point of views of others. (Welch)
- Art aids the development of social skills and group collaboration. In art classes, we encourage students to share their ideas and help each other.
Art is a fundamental component of a good education.
- Creative Paint helps children to seek out the possibilities within their own creative mind.
- Art teaches children to think critically, not to find the right answer.
- Through art, children learn that the solution to a problem is more than just one, and the answer might not be the only solution.
- Art teaches children to perceive subtle differences.
- Art teaches children to evaluate and judge the qualitative relationship.
- Art reminds us that the limit of language does not define the limits of our thinking.
- Art is a tribute to a variety of different ways to view and understand the world.
- Art teaches students to thoroughly explore and give every possible feedback.
- Art gives students the courage to say what is not being said.
- Art allows us to find out that what we can do is very broad and diverse.
- Including Art classes in the school curriculum is an adult’s way saying that art is important to students.
Eisner, E. (2002). The Arts and the Creation of Mind, Chapter 4, What the Arts Teach and How It Shows. Yale University Press. NAEA Publications.
Through the development of art skills, one can increase other areas of achievement.
Studies have indicated that art education improves the accomplishment in areas of academic, research, and communication, cognitive and more.
- SAT scores of students who have studied art for 4 years are 103 points higher than those who have no art experience. (Education Partnership Arts, 1995).
- The Chicago Art Education (CAPE) program integrates art education with traditional academic curriculum. The 9th Grade students participated in the program was ahead of the students of the same grade by one academic year. (Deasy & Catterall).
- 79.2% of the 8th Graders participated in the Art Education study received A or B scores, while the percentage for students without Art Education were 64.2%.
- -“In the United States today, the highest academic achievers of the school spend 20% to 30% of the day on art education” (test IAEEA 1988).
- In 10 grade 41.5% students who participated in the art studies, scores top two grades (out of possible four) in the standardized tests; students without art studies with 24.9% to match. (Deasy & Catterall).
- State of Ohio’s comprehensive art education students have made great progress in creativity, computing power, academic and artistic aesthetics. (Welch)
- Boston, Cambridge, and primary school students in 52 classes in 920 primary schools received 3 years of visual and performing arts classes, and the improvement of performance for students in major subjects, such as language, art, mathematics, reading and social studies were prominent. (Different ways of Knowing ,Welch)
- 96 children from 5-7 years old, who participated in the arts and music classes outside of the school received a higher test score for standardized math tests. (Rauscher)
- -“The world’s top academic cities place art and music education in a crucial position.” (IAEEA)
The development of art education and social skills
Catterall mentioned the guiding effect of social skills through art, including positive social behavior, coping under social duress, emotion, etiquette, and tolerance ability of expression; conflict resolution skills, collaborative ability and the attention to the moral development.
Rauscher says that the only way for students to perform a musical piece is to play together, so they learn to work together as a way to achieve a goal and that can be applied to other objectives.
- Schools in the City of New Jersey, implemented art exchange program catered for under privileged students of grade 4 to 6, including role play and story writing, has been reported to have greatly improved the attitude of oneself – students expressed trust, self acceptance and acceptance of others. (Welch)
- A review of 57 studies found that through art, ones self-awareness was significantly improved. The relationship between the involvement in music and the sense of self-awareness was particularly evident (Education Partnership Arts).
- Grade 5 band students gained satisfaction through their own band experience and the recognition of their peers and adults, and not toward ones ability or talent. (Arts Education Partnership)
- Texas middle school students participate in band, orchestra and choir were reported to have the lowest substance abuse incidence in life. (Children ‘s Music Workshop)
- -“Where there is music in the school, students are better connected with each other, they become more friendly, less fighting, less discrimination and less bitterness. (Support Music.com)
- Kodaly music program provides individual and group singing skill training, two surveys revealed that the primary schools participated in this program, once students receive a larger-scale Kodaly training, their classroom behavior and standard reading performance have been greatly improved. (Gardiner)
The study of the differences in the results of intervention of the art education is not conclusive. Obviously good schools are more inclined to introduce art education as a feature, and it is often considered that art training is very valuable in higher education or in a well off family. The investigation made clear that art is appealing to students and it has made a influential difference in learning. The direct link between participation in art education and student’s achievement is difficult to prove, but it is obvious. This link is more of a proof for students who have not had any achievements. Research shows that, despite the overall, the art education is, at least, a strong contributing factor to academic achievement, but more research is needed to determine which specific artistic guidance improves learning.
Vaughn and Winner (Links Critical) propose one have to be cautious when conducting art causation. The influence of family and background, rather than the participation of the arts, may also have a role to play in the higher academic achievement of students in their investigations. They mention that the performance of the outstanding students have more access to art courses and are more likely to be involved. Many private and aristocratic suburban school districts can retain their artistic programs, even in financial difficult times. On the contrast, central city schools usually have under performing students, are unable to receive same standard of education, also to maintain their art programs. Therefore students are less likely to take part in the art classes because of the lack of available resources. However, a lot of researches and trials have been done on the levels of income.
Supporters argue that educators should be alert to the transition between the art education and the students’ achievements in other subjects. ‘… The idea of learning mathematics through music or by means of visual arts can improve the standard test scores, which has lower art’s status in our society, and further the inherent the true value of art from the public eye. (Catterall, Critical Links)
The importance of art can also benefit those who don’t agree with the traditional educational program. They attract students who are not high achievers in other areas of the school. Many references cited in the study referred to those students who are more risk seeking and disappointed but participated in a variety of art education activities, tend to profit in academic and social welfare. A 20 years long program implemented for students without any achievements at 8 primary schools in the city of New York; by integrating visual and performing arts, a conclusive result shown an improvement in reading. (Welch) 41% of possible high school dropouts remained at school because of art. (Critical, Links Barry) research shows that the art based reading instruction can promote better reading skills, and most of it is to enhance the motivation of learning through arts. (Burger & Winner, Critical Links)
Despite these considerations, however, there is a definite positive correlation between art education and positive result, which include students’ achievement; numerous researches proven that it should be simply ignored. There are a lot of concrete studies that support the link between drama and music; and academic and social outcomes. Although there is not a lot of research on the impact of visual arts and dance, but one can still see these areas are some what connected to academic and social outcomes. “However, we must be vigilant not to diminish the true importance of music, which is the beauty and value that it brings to our children. We shouldn’t make our children participate in music simply because it may help with the development of the brain.” (Rauscher)
United States 1998, a group of 10 leading educational institutions, including the American Association of School Administrators, American Federation of Teachers, National Education Association, National Parent Teacher Association and the National School Boards Association, quoted a note from the specification of “Value and Quality of Art Education”. This note summarizes the following seven regulations:
- Every student in the United State of America must participate in one art related program.
- To ensure that all students receive a basic education in the field of art, that art must be considered as a solemn, core academic subject.
- Education policy makers must incorporated the latest various types of studies on the values and impacts of the arts education in the development of curriculum.
- A comprehensive set of courses and qualified art teachers must be regarded as the basis and core of the actual art education.
- The art education program should be based on rigorous instruction, provide meaningful academic progress and performance evaluations, and demonstrate a direct and clear framework to the school, parents and community.
- Provide community resources that are art related, rich in knowledge and artistic performance, as these can provide valuable support and to improve the school’s art educational programs… However, this type of activities cannot be replaced by a comprehensive, balanced, orderly art education granted by qualified teachers.
- We must fully support these practices, policies, and practitioners.
Arts Education Partnership, Gaining the Arts Advantage: More Lessons from School Districts that Value Arts Education.
Beyette, Beverly, The Arts Come Back to Class”, The California Arts Project, September 2001.
California Alliance for Arts Education, Who teaches the visual and performing arts in California public schools?.
Children’s Music Workshop Online, Music Advocacy Facts and Statistics.
Deasy, Richard and James Catterall, Increasing Student Achievement Through The Arts. American Youth Policy Forum. 2000.
Deasy, Richard J., Critical Links: Learning in the Arts and Student Academic and Social Development. Arts Education Partnership. 2002. Note this document includes a large number of research papers, which were cited in this paper.
Gardiner, Martin F., Arts Training in Education, The Teaching Exchange. January 1999.
Music Education Coalition, Music Education Statistics and Information.
National Association for Music Education, The Value and Quality of Arts Education: A Statement of Principles.
National Assembly of State Arts Agencies, Critical Evidence: How the Arts Benefit Student Achievement. 2006.
National Association of Music, Music Education Facts and Figures.
National Association of State Boards of Education, The Complete Curriculum: Ensuring a Place for the arts and foreign languages in America’s schools. 2003.
National Center for Education Statistics, Arts Education in Public Elementary and Secondary Schools: 1999-2000.
President’s Committee on the Arts and the Humanities (PCAH), Reinvesting in Arts Education: Winning America’s Future Through Creative Schools. May 6, 2011.
Rauscher, Frances H., Can Music Instruction Affect Children’s Cognitive Development? September 2003. Eric Digest #ED480540.
Taylor, Bruce D., The Skills Connection Between the Arts and 21st-Century Learning. February 2011.
Welch, Nancy and Andrea Greene, Schools, Communities and the Arts: A Research Compendium. Morrison Institute for Public Policy. June 1995.