8 Reasons Why Art is Important for Children’s Development

Children’s Art Week is a national programme run by Engage the National Association for Gallery Education as a way to get children involved in the arts. The 3-week celebration is held each summer and during this time, schools, art galleries, museums and community groups are encouraged to plan and provide creative activities and events to give children, young people, and families the opportunity to take part in practical activities with artists and art educators.

But why is art so important for children? In this article we explore the benefits that getting creative has for young people and showcase the artwork of the Kent-Teach Team’s little ones! 

1) Self-Expression and Managing Feelings

As with all creative pursuits, arts and crafts activities are a fantastic creative outlet. Through art, children can express themselves freely, and sometimes without realising it! Subconsciously, children will be expressing their inner thoughts and feelings through their artwork. Art is a great way for children to reflect and manage their emotions. The process of turning a thought into a tangible piece of art is a brilliant way of allowing us to manage our internal thoughts and feelings, moulding them into something real. Art and creative pursuits are proven to have a positive impact on mental health and wellbeing.

2) Improves Confidence and Self-Esteem

Art can improve confidence and self-esteem in a multitude of ways. For one, children will gain confidence in expressing themselves through the medium of art. Being able to channel thoughts and feelings into their artwork will, in turn, help them feel more confident in communicating how they are feeling. 

Art involves peer assessment and feedback, receiving positive or constructive feedback can only boost self-esteem and allow children to recognise their own strengths and accomplishments. Art is a truly unique concept which differs greatly from one person to the next. This serves as a validation of each person’s individuality and their unique existence. Moreover, as with most things, children will grow in confidence the more they engage with art. Improving their techniques, understanding the underpinnings of great art and recognising how art makes them feel all contribute to their sense of self-worth. 

3) Fine Motor Skills

A key physical skill which can be improved through art activities is fine motor skills. During arts and crafts children regularly use the various muscles in their fingers, wrists and hands. Regular use of these muscles improves their strength and finesse, which then makes other tasks, such as writing, far easier!

4) Patience

We all know that perfection takes time. Whether that be the length of time it takes to complete a piece of art or successfully executing an artistic technique, it takes patience and dedication. Once their artwork is completed, children will feel a huge sense of accomplishment and will learn that hard work and dedication is very much rewarded. It can be tempting to rush things to get them completed quicker or to give up completely if it is taking longer than planned. But, with time, children’s levels of patience will increase, and they will realise good things take time! 

5) Concentration

Similarly, concentration is a skill which isn’t learnt overnight; it develops slowly. Remaining committed to the task at hand and not letting their minds wander can be challenging for some children. But, with an end goal in mind and the motivation to succeed, budding young artists will focus on their artistic vision. Practising focus and concentration will benefit them in all areas of life and in a vast array of subjects. 

6) Planning and Foresight

A key part of a teacher’s lesson planning incorporates giving pupils opportunity to practice their planning skills. Whether that be writing a plan for a Big Write or writing step by step planning for a scientific experiment, planning can be incorporated easily into the curriculum. With arts and crafts, it is important for children to have an end goal in mind before beginning. They will also need to think about materials and equipment they may need. For an artistic vision to be executed successfully, it is important for children to think ahead and consider how they will achieve the end goal. Therefore, planning is an important life skill which goes hand in hand with other key skills, such as organisation.

7) Organisational Skills

In a similar vein to planning, organisational skills can be developed through arts and crafts. Making sure they have the equipment they need close by, a good workspace and getting timings right can contribute hugely to the success of an art project. Being organised is, of course, a fantastic quality to have and can make everyday life that tiny bit easier.

8) Bonding With Parents and Caregivers

Sometimes it can be hard to get children away from their screens and or the TV, especially in colder weather. Arts and craft activities including colouring is a fantastic way for carers to spend quality time with their child. You can colour together or simply talk to the child about the colours they are using to connect with them, not only doing this encourage communication between adults and children it supports understanding of colours and a heightened visual awareness. 

If you have a budding artist in your family then tag us in their artwork on our Facebook, Twitter or Instagram pages, we would love to see how your family get creative! Here are our little one's artistic creations they created for Children's Art Week: