Traditionally, art projects only had certain places in certain classes. The truth is that there are benefits for the developing brain that go far beyond hand-eye coordination. In fact, if they are a visual learner, art can make the difference between a student’s success in class. Here are the benefits that students of all modalities can experience.
The more ways that you can present material, the more ways a student can engage themselves with it. This is particularly true in the case of choice.
The more choice we can give students, the more engaged they are in their learning. Art requires a constant stream of choices, from choosing a subject to capture to the selection of colors. The project truly becomes “theirs”, and so does the learning.
Focus and concentration
More than ever, today’s students find their concentration skills under attack. There are just too many distractions vying for their attention, even in classrooms where devices aren’t being used.
It’s hard to accomplish an art project without focus. The product becomes disjointed. This practice in focus can carry over to the other classrooms. Besides, students often enjoy the break from being constantly “on call”.
Problem solving and creative thinking
Even professional artists have things go wrong during a project. Their ability to solve those problems can make the difference between a masterpiece and wasted time. Student artists are no different—except they are probably more likely to make mistakes.
Problem solving and critical thinking are two skills in which the Common Core and other next generation standards want students to be practicing on a regular basis. Today’s workers need to be able to think on their feet, a skill that often comes in handy during an art project.
Unlike professional artists, students usually have a very limited amount of time in which to complete a project. This calls for time management, a skill in which not many students come to school with. Make sure you give the students a time limit at the beginning and time at the beginning of a project in which to plan their strategy. Practicing those actions can pay dividends in every other class.
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