Is arts education a luxury?

We don’t need the arts in our schools to raise mathematical and verbal skills – we already target these in math and language arts. We need the arts because in addition to introducing students to aesthetic appreciation, they teach other modes of thinking we value.

For students living in a rapidly changing world, the arts teach vital modes of seeing, imagining, inventing, and thinking. If our primary demand of students is that they recall established facts, the children we educate today will find themselves ill-equipped to deal with problems like global warming, terrorism, and pandemics.

Those who have learned the lessons of the arts, however – how to see new patterns, how to learn from mistakes, and how to envision solutions – are the ones likely to come up with the novel answers needed most for the future.

Art for our sake: School arts classes matter more than ever – but not for the reasons you think,” by Ellen Winner and Lois Hetland, The Boston Globe, September 2, 2007
Hat tip ALD

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Posted in: Caught Our Eye

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