The Importance of Art in Education Systems

Kids Learn Better With Art Education

kids-in-art-classArts and its subcategories such as drawing, painting, music, theatre, and more have been part of the education curriculum for decades, but it seems that the tides are turning for arts in many institutions. Due to restricted budgets, many schools are picking off their art programs one by one, and by the end of this year, an estimated 25% of public schools may do just that completely. Of course, the first thing that may come to our mind upon hearing this report is the impact that it will have on teachers in the line of art, like those who teach dance or photography classes. But it could have an even deeper impression on the students itself, as studies in the past have shown that the art is a very important pillar of education. Studies have shown that those who don’t experience art classes may not only find chances to unleash their creative powers but also have higher chances of experiencing difficulty in mastering the core subjects, disciplinary crisis and are more possible to be dropped out.

Studies conducted by research organizations, professors, and schools demonstrate how vital the arts is to inspire and motivate students. For example, in 2002 the Arts Education Partnership spearheaded a research dealing with the effect of art in academic performance, conducted by nearly 100 researchers on 62 different studies. The result? “Schoolchildren exposed to drama, music and dance may do a better job at mastering reading, writing and math than those who focus solely on academics,” says the Arts Education Partnership. In 2009, the Center for Arts Education reported that schools that are more accessible to art programs also have higher graduation rates as opposed to schools that don’t, who reportedly have higher dropout rates. The Maryland school system says that visual arts skills could actually be used to enhance reading, while the skills developed in playing an instrument could be applicable to math.

Arts Education advocates have long claimed that skills earned through creative training could be used to excel in other academic areas, although not much research is conducted to prove the scientific basis of this claim. A four-year research, however, shows that students who do regular music classes were found to develop changes in brain structure in relation with motor skills, which they could be used to similar areas. Students who practiced specific art forms were found to have improved their attention system and fluid IQ scores. Similar conclusions are reached upon by other studies, proving that a maintained arts education has a large impact on a person’s social and intellectual development.

These studies only show how much schools are missing out in underestimating the power of art for a student’s development.