Reasons to take Art
Art encourages higher order thought processes that are different than many traditional academics. In art, there is no one correct answer. Therefore, the student is forced to analyze the problem given to them and come up with their own unique solution. This type of creative problem solving is a valuable skill.
For many students, especially those who learn in nontraditional ways, art classes offer them a greater chance to excel in school. Art appeals to all senses. Art students see demonstrations of the process they are to complete, read or do research about the art, and then complete the process themselves. By incorporating all of these types of learning, students who put in the time will find success. Art is always hands-on. Nothing solidifies knowledge more than by actively completing a task. Although reading and writing are important in my art classes, the focus is on creating artwork.
Art also enhances a student's perceptions. Artists tend to be more observant, conscious people. I teach art in a way that encourages students to examine the world around them. An artist designed the chair you are sitting in, the water bottle you drink out of, and the building you live in. Art students learn to examine the objects and images around them, including advertisements, videos, magazines and artwork. Art students develop a greater understanding of their visual culture and how they are affected by it.
Art allows students to express themselves and it can boost self esteem. As students gain independence and figure out who they are, being able to express themselves through art provides a wonderful outlet. Being able to look at a finished piece of artwork and say "I made that," gives anyone a great feeling of pride and accomplishment. There are very few classes where a student leaves with a product that he or she created and can be proud of. Art offers that opportunity. Eating cereal out of a bowl you made or gazing at a painting on the wall across from the couch can make everyday living more pleasant.
Studies have shown that students who take art classes do better in school overall.