5 Reasons to Teach Your Kids About Art

 

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Guest Blogger, Lizzie Weakley

Art can create a world that exists only in the confines of one’s heart. It gives young people the chance to fall in love with something that will reside with them for a lifetime. Art is not only successful as a form of entertainment but as a workshop to channel the intuitive mind. Some people shun intuitive thought, but the beauty in teaching children about the breadth and potential of art is priceless. Below are just a few reasons you should teach your kids about art.

1. Expression

Effective art communicates ideas, feelings, and dreams for the future. Children are still developing and visual art can give them the tools they need to convey their thoughts without the use of words. Painting, drawing and making handcrafts can redirect negative energy into something positive. This is great for children struggling with frustration, sadness, and chaotic emotions.

2. Confidence

When a child creates, they’re bound to experience a swell of pride in their accomplishment. The influence of peers and media can make young people feel ostracized and weak, but art has the power to build an inner power. Whether you magnet a finger painting to your fridge or use a metallic frame from places like Kelly Gallery, supporting your child’s artistic pursuits is important.

3. Wisdom

Art is suffused with passion, making it a masterful instructor. Whether its music, film, literature, animation or video games, art has the power to teach in a way that’s unique and striking. Showing your children a wide breadth of art can help them become more knowledgeable of the world and different ideologies, which is vital to helping them forge their own opinions and sense of self.

4. Grace

From the elegant flit of a dancer’s limbs to the soft lines of a hand-drawn animation cell, the graceful presence within art has the power to calm and improve focus. If you have a child that is hyperactive or anxious, the silken tone of the music and charming images can help her feel centered and peaceful. Since artistic activities are often sedentary, they give kids a moment to understand the importance of quiet movement and thought.

5. Individuality

Society tends to foster the concept that certain people are superior to others based on their personality type, appearance, and other status symbols. Exposing children to art can help them develop a sensitivity to others and a genuine interest in kindness and honesty. It helps children understand the beauty of oddities, and allows them to embrace themselves so that they don’t have to build up ego of false pretense.

Regardless of age or gender, art is for everyone. There are many reasons to promote art appreciation in your household, but perhaps the biggest is that it will make you form a stronger bond with your kids. If you take the time to engage in art projects with young ones, you’ll be creating memories that will last indefinitely.

Get Inspired by CRUTCH

Kids need to be empowered when faced with life’s challenges. They need to feel validated, understood and have a sense of control over their situation.

They need to be inspired.

Bill Shannon is doing just that.

Photo Credit: Mireya Acierto
Photo Credit: Mireya Acierto

Bill was diagnosed with Legg-Calve Perthes disease when he was five years old and depends on crutches to ambulate. He is an artist and dancer that focuses on his abilities to communicate with the world.

CrutchCollage

Bill is featured in a documentary, CRUTCH by, Sachi Cunningham and Chandler Evans.

CRUTCH chronicles the life of Bill Shannon, an internationally renowned artist, break dancer and skate punk, who wields his crutches as tools of expression and weapons of provocation.

A decade of exclusive access, plus a lifetime of archival footage, depict Shannon from his early years as a disabled child who refused to sit idle and watch able-bodied kids play, to his rise as an award-winning dancer and cutting-edge performance artist whose work finds outlet at prestigious venues worldwide, including Cirque du Soleil, the Sydney Opera House, the Tate Modern, and the Chicago MOCA.

CRUTCH examines Shannon’s controversial street performances as he exposes the hidden world of prejudices encountered by disabled people on a daily basis. It questions his methods as he exploits strangers’ good Samaritan impulses to make his point—and his art, yet marvels at his ability to offer solutions and empowerment to those facing similar challenges. The film explores how a degenerative condition and chronic physical pain have fueled both the beauty of his movements and his in-your-face attitude.

From childhood “cripple” to international provocateur, CRUTCH is an emotional journey of an artist’s struggle to be understood.

CRUTCH has created a Kickstarter site to help raise funds for the post production journey, so it can be featured at elite film festivals worldwide. They are half way to their goal!

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