I’m continuing my research on the effects of incorporating art classes in public schools. I have always enjoyed taking art classes– art, theatre, music– you name it, and I’ve always supported the belief that they should be used in all schools. Now that I’m officially researching this topic, however, it’s nice to find actual facts on the effects art classes have and how they stimulate student’s minds. Finding articles for the annotated bibliography was extremely critical in helping me learn more about my topic and find new sources of information.

While most articles I found were in favor of the arts, it was equally as important for me to find articles that were not in favor of art classes. I found that most not in favor of the arts were teachers who were fed up with the No Child Left Behind Act, which in part was intended to increase the use of the arts in schools. Most seemed to feel that the NCLB really didn’t perform the job it was intended to, and it left art teachers feeling even less important than before. Teachers felt that by being forced to use art in their classes, it distracted students from core subjects. While I still do not know everything about the NCLB, I have been able to gather that many were not in favor of it. If one measure taken by the government failed, then another needs to be enacted instead.

Despite people’s frustrations with it, I still have found an overwhelming amount of reasons why the arts should be used. One of my favorite articles I found was titled “State of the Arts,” written by Sabrina Holcomb. In it, she expresses an experiment performed by an elementary teacher in Texas, Ms. Coleman. Instead of her normal teaching approaches, Ms. Coleman instead used theatre in her classes and would dress up and perform while teaching her lessons. She found that students in her classes were experiencing rapid rates of learning. She also found that her student’s reading levels were jumping multiple grades by the end of the year- far more rapidly than in the past. I especially enjoyed this article because it is easy to find many sources that just mindlessly list a variety of facts, however, this one took observations directly from a teacher who used the argument that I am trying to make. This will make a huge difference when I write my paper about using the arts in schools. What do you think? Are art classes required in your school, and do you feel like they make a difference?

CC BY-SA 4.0 Continued Research: Using the Arts in Schools by Cami is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution-ShareAlike 4.0 International License.

11 Comments
  1. Arden 4 months ago

    Cami, Though I am not a fan of art projects in my academics, and find them to be stressful, yet I agree that art should be incorporated in schools. I do not have the artistic ability that most people think of when they hear the word art. I can not draw. I do, however, play the cello and I am involved with the orchestra at my school. Playing musical instruments has many beneficial effects on the brain. Musicians have to use their entire brains while playing their instruments, and, for kids, it significantly helps brain development. Art in schools is important for the development of creativity too. Einstein once said, “The true sign of intelligence is not knowledge but imagination.” He would imagine all of his genius ideas before he wrote them down or tried to figure them out with math. He also happened to be a violin player.

  2. Justin 8 months ago

    Hi Cami,
    I definitely agree that the arts should be incorporated into our schools. Throughout middle and high school, we’re given so-called “fun” projects that involve some drawing or coloring. These projects are never graded for artistic ability, because it is something that so many people lack (or, at least, they think they do). But drawing and painting are skills that can be learned. I find that it’s similar to math. So many people say that they’re not math people, but this is just completely misguided. Our brains are designed to see things quantitatively. I think that most artistic skills, particularly drawing could be easily learned, and then applied to other aspects of our schoolwork, just like math.

  3. Grace 9 months ago

    I completely agree with you. I think art classes are a necessity and tech you things that the other classes can’t. They encourage individuality and creativity and I believe they are key to a school. I think art allows students to explore many different aspects that you often can’t experience in a regular core class.

  4. Emma 9 months ago

    I think this is a great article. I like the way you introduce what you are doing and point out that you were trying to find articles both for and against art classes.

  5. Maddie 9 months ago

    This is very well written and I admire your dedication to this subject. I think that having art in school, or at least offering it, is very important to students. I think that it is a great creative outlet and can be very beneficial to students as art can be incorporated in many careers.

  6. Foster 9 months ago

    I really enjoyed your article. I personally greatly enjoy the arts and wish that they were more included into the school systems. I have always been greatly invested in my music and photography and wish it was more prevalent. I think this topic needs to be talked about more and can be useful for many students lives.

  7. Isa 9 months ago

    I think you are completely right about incorporating the arts with core classes! I think the arts can teach us things that our core classes cannot such as creativity and free thinking. Its a way to explore all aspects life can offer and can help one further figure out their path of the future.

  8. Victoria 9 months ago

    Hi Cami,
    I like this article, it brings up something that is not usually discussed among high schoolers. I personally favor art classes as part of public school curriculum because I have grown up with music. My elementary school was a choir school, and not only do I think incorporating the arts stimulates students’ minds, but it also taught me loads about discipline and resilience, which are both skills that I’ve used through high school.
    I think another facet about arts education you might be interested in was how art affects health (as well as development). Here is an article I think you might find useful 🙂 http://www.emeraldinsight.com/doi/abs/10.1108/09654280510617169
    Can’t wait to learn more about what you find!

  9. Addie 9 months ago

    I think arts are super important especially in a high school setting where many kids struggle with feeling like they belong. Arts provide that belonging for many and as you suggested also provide many educational benefits

  10. Genevieve 9 months ago

    Great writing Cami. I agree with you that art is really important. I think this is a great thing to put work into and pursue. I look forward to hearing more from you.

  11. Anna 9 months ago

    Hi Cami! I really enjoyed reading this article. I agree with you when you say that the arts should be incorporated in the school system. I think it is something that keeps the students engaged and make them enjoy school more than they usually do. I know from being a student that I have always loved my art classes not only because it gives me a break from the regular core classes, but it makes school much more fun. Your piece was very well written and I enjoyed your topic!

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