10 Things Tuesday- Our children….why the arts are important!

Young actors at work!

Our children are the future.  This is a phrase that has been championed by educators, politicians, advocates…and Whitney Houston. The future of this world rests upon the shoulders of its youth. It is our responsibility as adults to make certain that we foster the development of children’s potential.  Study after study has proven that the arts are a critical part of that development. Here are 10 reasons why we think the arts are important to our youth:

  1. The Arts Teach Problem Solving. Creating art demonstrates that there can be multiple solutions to the same problem. Art expands a child’s experience and encourages open-ended thinking that creates an environment of questions rather than answers.
  2. The Arts Improve Performance. Studies show that students who have taken 4 years of art and/or music in high school score 85 points higher on average than those who have taken the minimum requirement of a half year of art or music.
  3. The Arts Embrace Diversity. The arts help children think globally, which is necessary in today’s world. Through works of art, children gain exposure to diverse cultures and viewpoints.
  4. The Arts Facilitate Emotional Development. The arts foster the expression of complex feelings that help kids feel better about themselves and helps them understand others by “seeing” what they have expressed and created.
  5. The Arts Build Community. The arts reach across racial stereotypes, religious barriers, and socio-economic levels and prejudices. The arts encourage a sense of working together to achieve a goal.  Cooperation and respect are necessary to do this.
  6. The Arts Awaken the Senses. The arts support the bigger picture view of life: beauty, symbols, spirituality, storytelling, and help us step out of time allowing one to be present in the moment. Being present in the moment is one an actor’s greatest tools!
  7. The Arts are Enjoyable. Children enjoy creating in the arts and will spontaneously invent, for example, rhymes, chants, songs, dances and stories.
  8. The Arts Build Self-Confidence. Students who are engaged in the arts gain a greater sense of self awareness and confidence.  Those engaged in the arts have been shown to increase the quantity and quality of their classroom participation.
  9.   Art Generates a Love of Learning and Openness to New Ideas. The arts encourage exploration.  All art forms require students to take risks and keep an open mind.
  10. The Arts Allow You to Make Mistakes.   The arts involve trying out new ideas and exploring choices.  This  allows one to grow and learn from making mistakes.
The MET and The Fun Company are hot and heavy into our After School “In School Production” programming.  We are delighted to be working at area Elementary Schools producing full length musicals with enthusiastic students in grades k-5.