THE IMPORTANCE OF ART IN CHILD DEVELOPMENT
By Grace Hwang Lynch (pbs.org page)
In recent years, school curricula has shifted heavily toward common core subjects of reading, science and math, but what about the arts? Although some may regard art education as a luxury, simple creative activities are some of the building blocks of child development. Learning to create and appreciate visual aesthetics may be more important than ever to the development of the next generation of children as they grow up.
Motor Skills: Many of the motions involved in making art, such as holding a paintbrush or scribbling with a crayon, are essential to the growth of fine motor skills in young children. According to the National Institutes of Health, developmental milestones around age three should include drawing a circle and beginning to use safety scissors. Around age four, children may be able to draw a square and begin cutting straight lines with scissors. Many preschool programs emphasize the use of scissors because it develops the dexterity children will need for writing.
Language Development: For very young children, making art—or just talking about it—provides opportunities to learn words for colors, shapes and actions. When toddlers are as young as a year old, parents can do simple activities such as crumpling up paper and calling it a “ball.” By elementary school, students can use descriptive words to discuss their own creations or to talk about what feelings are elicited when they see different styles of artwork.
Decision Making: According to a report by Americans for the Arts, art education strengthens problem-solving and critical-thinking skills. The experience of making decisions and choices in the course of creating art carries over into other parts of life.
Visual Learning: Drawing, sculpting with clay and threading beads on a string all develop visual-spatial skills, which are more important than ever. Even toddlers know how to operate a smart phone or tablet, which means that even before they can read, kids are taking in visual information. This information consists of cues that we get from pictures or three-dimensional objects from digital media, books and television. Art education teaches students how to interpret, criticize, and use visual information, and how to make choices based on it. Knowledge about the visual arts, such as graphic symbolism, is especially important in helping kids become smart consumers and navigate a world filled with marketing logos.
Inventiveness: When kids 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.
Cultural Awareness: As we live in an increasingly diverse society, the images of different groups in the media may also present mixed messages. Teaching children to recognize the choices an artist or designer makes in portraying a subject helps kids understand the concept that what they see may be someone’s interpretation of reality.
Improved Academic Performance: 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 (three hours a day on three days each week through one full year) are four times more likely to be recognized for academic achievement, to participate in a math and science fair or to win an award for writing an essay or poem than children who do not participate. (This information taken from an article written By Grace Hwang Lynch)
Below are art classes we have found in Jeddah. If you know of additional facilities that offer children’s art classes please let us know a firstname.lastname@example.org. Also feel free to leave a comment below if you have an experience at one of the below facilities and would like to share with others.
ART WITH YURSA:
Ages: 4 to 12
Activities: send them here for fun activities, there will be an art class in which they will learn about colours and still life drawings, and basic things.
Whats App : 0546037489
Location: Bani Malik near Al Ruwili Hospital
Ages: 3-12 yrs
Fees: 1000Sar for 4 classes
Location: Al Naeem District
Phone: 0126224344 / 0126224345 / 0126624346 / 0533657700
House of Traditional Arts: (focus on geometric and Islamic Arts)
Age: child to adult
Fees: mostly free some classes might have small fee
Phone: 054 439 8889
Little Caterpillars Club:
Ages: Pre-school- 6yrs
Fees: Please call
Phone: 054 099 7755
MOTION BOUTIQUE: (ART AND BALLET TOGETHER)
Ages: 3 years and up
Fees: 350Sar/month and up depending on number of times per week and dancing level of child.
Location: Al Naseem
SAUDI CENTER FOR FINE ARTS:
Children’s art classes
Ph: 012 661 2041
Location: on Prince Mohammed Bin Abdulaziz St, Al Andalus.
YOUNG REMBRANDTS (3 locations):
Alif Center off of Malak Road
Ages: 4-12 years
Fee: 1 month 500Sar, 2months 900Sar, 3 months 1200Sar
Schedule: Monday 4-6:30, Saturday 11-12:30
Al Rawdah Street in the Elegant Home building, across from Saudi French Bank.
Fee is 800 SAR for My Library Members or 1500 for non-members. Two month program where classes are held once a week.
Phone: 055 056 5110 or 012 263 1709
Ages: 4-6 yrs and 7-12 yrs
Fee: 550Sar Per month/4 classes or 800Sar for 2 months/8 classes