The Arts Will Make a Better Future for Us and Our Children
When life gets hard, it seems that it’s the arts that are the first to be put on the back burner. We have a tendency to think that they are a luxury that we can’t afford. In my own life, I have seen peace and meaning being manifest in me, in my work, in my children, and in their work from their exposure to the arts. Even though they have not chosen to be artists, per se, I see what the influence itself has given them.
An article by Dee Dickenson really hit home for me. It mentions some real reasons we so desperately need the arts in our lives.
• They are languages that all people speak that cut across racial, cultural, social, educational, and economic barriers and enhance cultural appreciation and awareness.
• They provide opportunities for self-expression, bringing the inner world into the outer world of concrete reality.
• They develop both independence and collaboration.
• They make it possible to use personal strengths in meaningful ways and to bridge into understanding sometimes difficult abstractions through these strengths.
• They improve academic achievement — enhancing test scores, attitudes, social skills, critical and creative thinking.
• They exercise and develop higher order thinking skills including analysis, synthesis, evaluation, and “problem-finding.”
• They provide the means for every student to learn.
Adapted from “Why the arts are important?” by Dee Dickenson
How could we pass up an opportunity to give the world so much? I challenge you to use the arts of any kind to enhance your world. Encourage it in others, enjoy it for yourself, and help find a way to provide for it in schools, society, and homes.