|By Nathan, Age 4|
The development of art was one one of the first steps that mankind took on his path to civilization. Throughout history, great value has been placed on beauty, originality, and creativity. From cave paintings, shell beads and tattoos to modern day architecture, advertisements and photography, art is all around us, and in fact, embedded deep into our very being.
Why then, do we need to nurture it, teach it, and experience it if it is already a part of us? Because many of us have lost the ability to express what is inside of us, to open our eyes and really see the world around us, or even to admit that art is a part of our lives at all.
In today’s schools, many art programs are being cut. It is not unusual for children to have never held a paintbrush, squeezed a lump of clay, or even been a part of a class play. Oddly enough, many schools are beginning to offer “enrichment” programs to home schooled families as a way to recoup some of the funding lost due to these children not being in school. I can sign a home schooled child up for an art class (http://www.mdlp.org/eagleridge/wednesdayart.htm), but the child in public school does not get that same luxury. Don’t get me wrong, I think these types of programs are wonderful, I just wish they would be offered to ALL children.
We have a tendency to put a huge emphasis on excelling in math and reading, science and social studies, however we are telling children that art is not worth learning. That it isn’t a “real” choice as a career field. Now look around at the world. Everywhere you turn, there is art. Now, more than ever. There are billboards and advertisements that SOMEONE designed. There are websites, buildings, landscaping and products surrounding us that have all been designed with beauty, originality and creativity. The movies we watch, the music we listen to and the apps we have on our phones and ipads are all forms of art.
|By Amairani, Grade 1|
(These photos are actual color, they have not been changed.