It’s been proven that early exposure to visual art promotes activity in the brain.
Many of the motions involved in making art are essential to the growth of fine motor skills. The emphasis on the use of scissors and clay helps to develop the dexterity the children need for writing.
Making art provides young children the opportunities to learn words for colors, shapes and actions. They can use descriptive words to discuss their own creations or to talk about what feelings are elicited when they see different styles of artwork.
When children explore art ideas and materials, they are testing possibilities and working through challenges. Art allows children to make their own assessments, while also teaching them that a problem may have more than one answer. Instead of following specific rules or directions, the child’s brain becomes engaged in the discovery of “how” and “why.” The experience of making decisions and choices in the course of creating art carries over into other parts of life.
Drawing, painting and sculpting with clay develop visual-spatial skills, which are more important than ever. Art education teaches children how to interpret, criticize, and use visual information, and how to make choices based on it.
Children express themselves through art and their artwork is the manifestation of that expression, but more often, the physical process of creating is the expression. Art also develops a child’s creativity. Rather than being told what to do, answers and directions come from the child. Art is a process, not a product. It is the process of creating — exploring, discovering, and experimenting — that has the greatest value. Through self-expression and creativity, children’s skills will develop naturally, and their ability to create will soar.
When children are encouraged to express themselves and take risks in creating art, they develop a sense of innovation that will be important in their adult lives. Art is a way to encourage the process and the experience of thinking and making things better!
Art helps children come to terms with themselves and the control they have over their efforts. Through art, they also practice sharing and taking turns, as well as appreciating one another’s efforts. Art fosters positive mental health by allowing a child to show individual uniqueness as well as success and accomplishment, all part of a positive self-concept.
Studies show that there is a correlation between art and other achievement. A report by Americans for the Arts states that young people who participate regularly in the arts are four times more likely to be recognized for academic achievement than children who do not participate.