Educating Forward – With Performing Arts

“The arts are an essential element of education, just like reading, writing, and arithmetic… music, dance, painting, and theatre are all keys that unlock profound human understanding and accomplishment.” – William Bennett, Former US Secretary of Education.

The ‘Performing Arts’ is increasingly gaining recognition as a significant aspect of a school’s curriculum. Providing opportunities to participate in theatre, dance and music contributes positively to the social and emotional development of children and young adults.

Some of the benefits include:

Developing creativity and confidence. Being involved in drama and music encourages imaginative play, stimulates the brain and allows children to be innovative and think ‘out-of-the-box’. Performing in front of an audience is a very valuable experience to develop confidence. The success of performing and receiving applause is a reassurance of achievement and self worth. It gives the performer a sense of power and will encourage a child to aim higher and give them the confidence to overcome any obstacles.

Exposure to art and culture. Developing language and musical skills offers a valuable advantage for young people and creates a more liberal-minded person. This further produces sophisticated and cultured individuals who tend to be more successful in their professional work and personal lives.

Promoting self-discipline and motivation. When involved in the arts, a person needs to be self-disciplined to develop healthy work habits and schedule training to be successful. The reward for dedication is the good feeling one gets from the audience’s applause, which in turn keeps the person motivated.

Enhancing problem solving skills. Dealing with unexpected situations and finding a solution is a skill gained from performing arts. Any performer will vouch that not all may go as planned – problems may be encountered on stage, things may go wrong and lines may be forgotten. However, the ability to think fast, keep calm and carry on is a necessary quality to acquire. Improvisation develops imagination and self-expression.

Improved intelligence and communication skills. Working with music, memorising scripts and thinking about body language all helps to improve intelligence, cultivates reading and enhances communication skills. Reading, absorbing and retaining information is something many successful people advocate for triumph in the working world.

Promoting social interaction, cooperation and collaboration. Performing arts promotes working together as a team as well as encouraging and developing individual talent.  When a child has a part to play in a music ensemble, or a theatre play or dance production, they begin to understand that their contribution is necessary for the success of the group. Through these experiences children gain confidence and start to learn that their contributions have value even if they don’t have the biggest role.

At AMETIS, learners are encouraged to be actively involved in performing arts. The annual school Christmas Pantomime this year is about the boy who wouldn’t grow up – Peter Pan, which will be on December 3. Admission is by invitation only.

“The future belongs to young people with an education and the imagination to create.” – President Barack Obama.

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