Whether you’re creating a full home-school curriculum or just wish to bond with your kids on a rainy day, arts, crafts, and musical activities are a great way to get involved. Art plays an important role in child development, and can also provide you with a hands-on way to connect with your little one. Here’s a closer look at just how important art and music can be for a growing child!
Art and music are frequently incorporated into classroom programs from preschool all the way up to high school! For small children, the act of drawing and painting helps develop fine motor skills, while also aiding with language development. Making and talking about art and music allows toddlers to talk about colours, shapes, and stories. Kids today are more visual-savvy than ever, particularly having grown up around technology like tablets and laptops.
Actively making something helps them develop their visual skills, working on spatial relationships and defining emotions. At the same time, art and music can open a child’s awareness about the global society we live in, helping open up new worlds of culture. And what does all of this spell in the long run? A boost to academic performance. If you take child care courses like these, you’ll see that art instruction is often an important part of the curriculum at all ages.
Making Art Together
So how can you reap the benefits of art and music education while spending time with your child? Make art or sing songs together! Ask your child lots of questions about his drawings, paintings, and clay sculptures. It’s a good idea to ask open-ended questions, which allow your child to stretch her imagination all on her own.
Invest in a few basic art supplies. These don’t have to be fancy! You could have a box full of old ribbons, stickers, crayons, and bits of fabric to play with together. Sitting down to create a work of art together can allow children to stretch their imagination along with you, and help you make connections to real life objects and events.
Finally, leave the confines of your home together to get out there and identify works of art in real life. Plan field trips to art museums, which often offer programs designed specifically for children. Look for hands-on workshops at local libraries, and attend storytelling or live music events. If you have the time, you can look up the schedule of the latest exhibitions to find those which would be of interest to you and your child.
The summer months are a particularly good time for this, when parks and other public spaces offer free music concerts and singalongs. Don’t live in a big city? You can still often spot art in unique places, whether it’s street art or an exhibition at the local coffee shop or shopping mall. As you go out into the field, discuss what you’ve seen with your child. He just may notice something that’s completely new to you too!