Art education means different things to different people, but the crux of it, is that it imparts knowledge and education in various fields of the arts like music, theatre, dance and visual arts. Society functions in such a way now, that a majority of the manual and technical jobs that were done by people before, can be done by machines. The main demand lies in innovation and creativity, thinking outside the box and having good interpersonal skills.
Just like mathematics or science, art requires regular practice and is not something that can be achieved through sporadic learning. Regular engagement and education in the arts has to be imbibed in the school curriculum for it to have an effect on the students.
Some of the most obvious benefits of art education is that it encourages creativity and engagement in a different way from what is usually taught in the school. Instead of being fed facts they can explore their interests and indulge in what excites them the most. Apart from this, art has a wide range of uses and influences on its students. It improves motor skills, simple things like mastering a paint brush or using crayons and pencils help develop finer motor skills, especially in younger children. Studying the arts also helps improve academic performance, not just through creativity, but it improves learning in areas like math and science as well as the literary field.
Art education also fosters collaboration and group learning. Often times, it brings people and children together, helping them learn from, and aid each other as they persevere towards creating something. It improves emotional balance and helps kids become team players. It also improves accountability, as kids claim responsibility for their mistakes and accept their faults when working together.
When creating something, the decision of what colors and what medium to use is left entirely to our own choices and preferences. Art education helps improve decision making, boosts the self confidence and makes children more self-assured, as they learn about what appeals to them, and they directly influence how their final product will look. They can become self-learners, constantly challenging themselves, and become more focused on achieving their goals.
Todays world is steeped in the Information Age. With all kinds of knowledge so readily available at our fingertips, it doesn’t matter what you know, but rather how you use what you know. Every academic and professional institution is looking for what you bring to the table in terms of ideas, innovation and team-playing. An education in the arts is integral in developing these fundamental, yet abstract components of human knowledge and skill. Learning about art in all its forms makes students challenge the world they see around them, looking for multiple ways to solve problems and create something new. The true talent of man now lies in his ability to draw from many wells”, and art is the medium through which we can access those wells.
Also read: Full STEAM ahead: Siddharth Mathur; National Academy of Science and Creative Arts