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: Kids and the Arts

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A place to start: what are the arts?

music (playing and singing)
paintings and drawings
sculpture (molding, chiselling, compiling)

The "Arts" is an expression, a form of communication. 

  • It speaks of feelings, and mood. 

  • It depicts societies and cultures, ways of life. 

  • It speaks of our history, our past.

  • It is a freedom, beyond the physical.

  • It is the physical, the psychological, the philosophical.

  • It is happiness and joy; it is sadness and pain.

  • It is therapy; it is healing.

  • It is thoughts, emotions, confusions, and clarity.

  • It is rational and irrational.

  • It is math; it is language.

  • It is the vehicle for building connections in our minds.

What is "The Arts"? I do not know.

The Arts

'the whole underlying philosophy of photography in the academic field is to encourage children to look for certain things in the world around them, and to demonstrate that they have seen by recording it with a photograph'

Phillip Dawson

(How can we best use the Arts 
in a child's life? )

How can we help develop a child's artistic ability? 

  • Exposure to art is a key element.  Surround a child with samples of art: hang pictures by Picasso and Monet; play Mozart and Brahms; take them to the theatre and the opera.

  • Provide the tools and the skills to use them properly.  So often we let children do things their own way only to make them do it the proper way years later after the "bad" habits have been formed.  Why not show them properly in the first place!!! ?? [have a look at this Sanford site for drawing and painting]

  • Give them opportunities to express themselves freely as well as time to learn the techniques through structured activities.

  • Recognize and acknowledge their achievements --regardless of your own personal appraisal of their artistic endeavors

  • Display their art in a prominent place (if they choose to do so)

  • And when the "fridge door is full" let them decide what comes down and where it is filed.

  • Keep a collection of art -- to watch the progression of skills.  Help them critique their own work and progress..

  • Use art in all areas of teaching (ex. math)  (check out this information on  "Discipline based art education")

  • Incorporate all areas of learning into the art:  Create a Classroom Museum

Art Lessons On-Line

 Sites listed have been chosen for their quality and variety.

 and some other favourites

an email worth sharing 


Back to "Today's Child" 


I read your home page.
Sun, 21 Jan 2001 14:22:16 +0900

This email was sent to be a while ago. It really demonstrates the importance of the "arts" in the classroom. 

How do you do ?
Nice to meet you.
Why I send you the mail is your way of thoughts are
so great and I really moved.
I can't help mailing you right now.

I 'm writing this mail in Japan.
I'm a undergraduate at Japanese private school.
I don't have any special knowledge about children education, but just have interests in the use of art to grow up their every fields of abilities.
Here in Japan, we can't hardly touch arts at the stage of education.
Of course there's exception, however, the style to teach is almost with textbooks, children copy the blackboard to their notebooks.
We are good at memorizing but not good at self-thinking.
I think it is caused because the majority of Japanese focuses on not what they study but how high the school's level they would enter.
I suppose that this is one of the reason that Japanese students tend to lose their aim or dream, what they really want to do after they enter universities.
I was really happy to find your site and to know the epoch making ideas  toward education.
I'll check your page out sometimes.
See you.

Senko Washizu