So, you can barely draw a stick figure. Here are eight reasons to embrace art in the classroom. For some, art is a driving force. For others, it’s absolutely dreaded. Whether it’s a love or hate relationship, encouraging students to articulate their thoughts and feelings in creative ways proves benFeb 26, 2016
So, you can barely draw a stick figure. Here are eight reasons to embrace art in the classroom.
For some, art is a driving force. For others, it’s absolutely dreaded. Whether it’s a love or hate relationship, encouraging students to articulate their thoughts and feelings in creative ways proves beneficial. Here’s why you should work to integrate opportunities for art in the classroom.
- Art makes concepts more memorable. Ask students to draw the scene from one of Shakespeare’s plays or the Very Hungry Caterpillar and they’re bound to remember it.
- Engage visual learners so they’re not left in the dust. If you enable students to draw pictures along with their creative writing, they may not loathe the writing process—it’s worth a shot!
- It makes the mundane fun! Although, it’s not everyone’s favorite pastime, making things with your hands can be enjoyable. Give students a break from solving mathematical word problems, and ask them to create one of their own, using pictures instead of words.
- Encourage problem solving and strengthen decision-making skills. Art is unpredictable. A marker may run out and paint may splatter in the wrong direction. Students are forced to problem solve and take next steps, on the spot, when doing artistic tasks.
- Build self-esteem. Students have varied strengths. Some will feel invigorated by artwork. As educators, it’s important to help learners find their passions to cultivate lifelong learning.
- Increase motor skills. Dexterity is required to work with a variety of materials and tools. Give students the opportunity to experience new things as they continue their educational journey.
- Heighten cultural awareness and diversity. Different students translate the world onto paper in various ways. Plus, everyone comes from a different background. Studying each other’s art can make individuals more empathetic and understanding of varying viewpoints.
- Create a calm environment. Whether or not students are stressed by tests and assignments will differ from class to class. Perhaps allowing learners to clear their mind with a coloring book after an exam will alleviate anxieties. Or, ask students to create an alternative ending to a novel without consulting peers in a photo illustration. But, proceed with caution—coloring books for adults are ‘all the rage’ in mental health right now and it may become your new favorite pastime!
Call to Action: Looking for creative ways to enhance classroom learning? Join the Arizona K12 Center for Dice, Dominoes and Decks of Cards for the Eight Mathematical Practices on April 16.