Headteacher Magazine, guide to services and products for UK Schools
By Charlotte Baldwin, Operations Manager at IQ Cards
The arts have faced adversity for a long time, with many questioning its worth, particularly when compared with the sciences, and this problem is still resonant within schools. Recent campaigns have been designed with the aim of encouraging more girls to go into STEM subjects, all while undermining the value within arts subjects. Although stable jobs within the arts sectors may be harder to come across than those in sciences, there is no denying that the subjects can instill very valuable skills in children at early stages, which can then be carried on into other fields.
Regular practice of arts and crafts is a great way to introduce and hone the motor skills that form the base of physical coordination. Activities that seem very simple to adults, such as using a pen, cutting with scissors, or following a template, take a good deal of adjustment to children, and occupying them with frequent arts and crafts projects that will push their capabilities and get them to pursue new challenges is good for encourage them to develop their physical skills.
Art is one of the few academic subjects that is open to interpretation and has no right or wrong answer. In an environment rigidly defined by the boundaries of ‘correctness’, art is a really valuable opportunity for children to experiment, to try out new ideas, and most importantly, to learn through experience that it is good to come up with original ideas and to approach situations with creativity.
Healthy communication and interaction, and confidence around new people, is an important aspect of successful adult life, and can make the preceding school years much easier. It is common for young children, especially those who did not attend playgroup or nursery, to find being without parents and having to interact with strangers a difficult thing to adjust to when they start school, and some continue to struggle around other people. Crafting activities are a fun and relaxed way to encourage teamwork and allow children to get to know others - and this is a skill that is often undervalued.
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