The Myriad of Positive Benefits Art Brings to Children

In this edition of Teacher Talks Articles, we talk with Primary and Lower Secondary Art Specialist, Johan Swart about the benefits studying and creating art has on the development on young minds and advice and project ideas for parents wanting to help promote their child’s interest in art.

Art and Brain Development

For the brain to be efficient, the two hemispheres of the brains must work together.  By stimulating and exercising the right hemisphere of the brain, art strengthens the connection between both hemispheres. Children should be exposed to the arts as their cognitive skills mature so that their right brain will be as developed as the left, and both hemispheres work in tandem, thus helping unlock the full potential of a child’s mind.


How does the art promote cognitive and social growth?

Through the study and practice of art numerous benefits can be found, including but not limited to:

  • Learning to observe and describe, analyze and interpret.
  • Gaining the ability to express feelings, with or without words.
  • Developing problem-solving skills and critical-thinking skills.
  • Encouraging team-work through collaboration with other children and with adults.
  • Introducing children to different cultures and perspectives from around the world.

Art and its Effect on Academic Performance


Studies show that there is a correlation between art and other scholastic achievement. A report by “Americans for the Arts” states that young people who participate regularly in the arts are four times more likely to be recognized for academic achievement, to participate in a math and science fair or to win an award for writing an essay or poem compared to children who do not study art.

Projects to Do at Home

At YCIS we have qualified art specialist teachers. We try and provide creative materials for the students because they thrive when they create, experiment and discover things they enjoy. For Parents, Exploring and creating art together with your children at home is a great way to bond and help your child grow into a fully rounded individual. But remember, it’s the process of creating art that young children learn from, not the end product. No matter how tempting, never criticize or judge your child’s artwork. Enjoy the journey, and be proud of the destination you have reached together. Projects families could do together could be:

  1. Creating a scrapbook together. Put photos, memorabilia, drawings, and captions together creatively. In doing so, you will not only have a shared experience but a memory that will last for many years.
  2. Notice the arts all around you – take your family to museums, concerts, or theater.  Notice the art even in the parks, subways, and open spaces.  Start a conversation about what you see.
  3. Create a home art gallery for your child’s artwork. A kitchen wall or pin board is ideal for sticking up pictures and paintings. You could ask your child to choose one special painting each week to frame in the centre of the gallery. This shows that you value your child’s creations.
  4. Non-Traditional Painting: Give your toddler a few non-traditional items such as a clean deodorant roller bottle, toothbrush, Q-tip, and a flyswatter, and let him paint with each one of the items.
  5. Child Mural: Line an entire wall with butcher paper and tape it securely in place. Give your child a crayon, paint or oil pastels, and let they draw to their heart’s content.

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