The Benefits of Art for Kids

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The benefits of art for kids are many and include problem-solving abilities, creativity, literacy, fine & gross motor skills, connection, and understanding.

The Benefits of Art for Kids

Everyone says art and creativity are important, but are you wondering what the actual benefits of art are for kids?

Today I’m sharing some of the many kids’ art benefits as well as a quote about children’s art that I just love.

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Just one of the many benefits of art…

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The Benefits of Art and Artful Living

The Artful Parent Book by Jean Van't HulExcerpted from The Artful Parent: Simple Ways to Fill Your Family’s Life with Art & Creativity, © 2013 by Jean Van’t Hul. Reprinted by arrangement with Roost Books, an imprint of Shambhala Publications Inc., Boston, MA.

Educators tell us that art encourages fine motor skills, neural development, and problem-solving abilities and that it can be used effectively to teach and understand other key subjects such as reading, writing, math, and science. Therapists tell us that art is valuable because it allows children to process their world, to deal with sometimes scary emotions in a safe way, and because it gives them critical sensory input. Artists tell us that art is important for its own sake—as a source of beauty and expression, as well as simply for the process of creating. Kids tell us that art is fun, an activity they enjoy. Parents tell us that art is vital to their families because it keeps everyone engaged and happy and helps with the sometimes difficult transitions of the day.

Art is naturally linked to creativity, an attribute that is increasingly being touted as one of the most important factors for the success of individuals, organizations, and cultures.

The truth is that art is vital, if somewhat intangible, and that if children engage in hands-on art activities, they learn much better in all disciplines. Here are some of the reasons why children thrive when they make art.

Art Promotes Creativity

Benefits of Art #1 :: Art Promotes Creativity

Creativity is the ability to think outside the proverbial box, to string two unrelated ideas together in a new way. Solutions to major problems and breakthroughs of all kinds are linked to creativity. The ability to be creative is vital to the success of our children and the well-being of our world, now more than ever, as we face incredible challenges such as racial discord, wars, global warming, and mass extinctions. Individuals, organizations, and governments seek innovative solutions every day. According to the International Child Art Foundation, “Research indicates that a child who is exposed to the arts acquires a special ability to think creatively, be original, discover, innovate, and create intellectual property—key attributes for individual success and social prosperity in the twenty-first century.” The world needs more and better thinkers.

Art Encourages Neural Connections

Benefits of Art #2 :: Art Encourages Neural Connections

Art is an activity that can employ all the senses—sight, sound, touch, smell, and taste—depending on the activity. Children’s brain synapses fire away as they experiment and create, squishing paint between their fingers, mixing colors and materials, or drawing from imagination or what they see in front of them.

Art Builds Fine Motor Skills

Benefits of Art #3 :: Art Builds Fine Motor Skills

Gripping a paintbrush, drawing dots and lines, mixing colors, cutting with scissors, controlling a glue stick or squeezing a glue bottle, kneading and rolling playdough, tearing paper—all of these tasks require increasing amounts of dexterity and coordination, yet they are so fun and rewarding that children want to do them over and over. As kids engage in art activities over time, their fine motor skills improve.

Scribbling is a Precursor to Writing

Benefits of Art #4 :: Scribbling is a Precursor to Writing

Babies and toddlers begin by scribbling randomly, back and forth. The more they scribble, the more they are able to control the crayon and its movements across the paper. As children learn to control their scribbling, they make a wider variety of shapes, eventually making all the shapes necessary to write the letters of the alphabet—any alphabet.

Kids Art is Good for Problem Solving Abilities

Benefits of Art #5 :: Art Develops Problem-solving Abilities

Open-ended, process-oriented art is nothing but an endless opportunity for making choices, coming to conclusions, second-guessing decisions, and evaluating results. Children become more comfortable with uncertainty and remain flexible thinkers, which is key for creativity and confidence. And the more experience they have with a variety of materials and techniques, the more likely they are to try new combinations and ideas.

Art Helps Kids Understand Themselves and Their World

Benefits of Art #6 :: Art Helps Kids Understand Themselves and Their World

Children absorb incredible amounts of new information, and they need to process what they have learned in a safe, reflective way. Art allows them to explore feelings and deal with both daily and significant events. Art materials provide a safe outlet for emotions. Feelings and ideas can be reduced to a manageable size and manipulated as desired. Movement, image, color, line, and imagination all help children express themselves in a multidimensional way—a way that words may not be able to do, or that may be more comfortable for them than words.

When we encourage our children to explore art, we encourage them to master themselves, their bodies, and a variety of tools and techniques. We give them many ways to express themselves. As parents and teachers, we can offer an environment where it is safe to experiment and create, where questions are encouraged and children have free access to the materials they need and enjoy. We do this not to produce career artists but to raise children who are confident and comfortable with their creativity in whatever form in takes.

Art Helps Kids Connect

Benefits of Art #7 :: Art Helps Kids Connect

Art is an equalizer, helping create a common ground for children who don’t know each other and who may or may not be interested in the same things. It can help people of all ages, races, abilities, and even languages engage in a shared (and generally mutually loved) activity.

The path to an art-filled life involves an open mind, a few simple tools, a bit of preparation, and an exploratory approach. It’s a path anyone can take at a pace that suits you and your family.

The Artful Parent Book

From The Artful Parent: Simple Ways to Fill Your Family’s Life with Art & Creativity, © 2013 by Jean Van’t Hul. Reprinted by arrangement with Roost Books, an imprint of Shambhala Publications Inc., Boston, MA.

This post contains affiliate links.Read more about The Artful Parent book here or check out the more than 150 reviews for the book on Amazon (5-star cumulative).

The Artful Parent is available for purchase on  AmazonRoostBooks.com, and your favorite bookstore.

Want help fostering your children’s creativity? I have three online courses for parents who want to raise creative kids. Click here to buy now or learn more.

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The benefits of art for kids are many and include problem-solving abilities, creativity, literacy, fine & gross motor skills, connection, and understanding. #kidsart #arteducation #parenting #artsandcrafts #education

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18 Comments

  • Reply
    Sandhya
    January 28, 2016 at 10:46 am

    I loved this part of your book and referred to it many times when developing my children’s app HangArt. I discovered your book one afternoon on the “parenting” shelf at the beautiful library of Nyack, NY in the children’s section near the puppet theater. My daughter worked on creating a puppet show and I read these pages over and over again, feeling like all the thoughts that had been floating in my mind were here put on paper. As our kids have more and more exposure to technology and so many parents do not have dedicated physical arts centers in their home spaces, I was very intrigued by the idea of creating an interactive world for children where they are developing the early literacy skills of reading and writing hand-in-hand with exposure to the arts and creativity. So, I just want to thank you for your book! It was an inspiration.

  • Reply
    Dee Farrell
    January 30, 2016 at 8:27 pm

    Great points made about creativity and art. Your book is a good resource for parents.

  • Reply
    surya
    February 6, 2016 at 1:10 am

    Thanks for sharing this article. I learned so many things like art encourages skill which are easily understand. These helps to teach the children to improve their art skills.

  • Reply
    Troy Blackburn
    December 14, 2016 at 6:59 pm

    I love what you said about how art can be an endless opportunity for making choices, coming to conclusions, and evaluating results. That sounds great for kids to learn! I’ve heard, too, that art can help kids develop self-control and a positive self-image. My wife and I are deciding what activities to enroll our children in, and we’ll have to consider art classes now!

  • Reply
    Alexandria Martinez
    November 28, 2017 at 8:12 pm

    The other day, my nephew was showing a lot of interest in taking art classes. He was really excited about the idea of creating beautiful visual pieces. I think his parents would love it if he was connecting with kids among many other benefits.

  • Reply
    nyree
    April 18, 2018 at 5:24 am

    hi there great link and ideas….can i ask the last picture of the girl at the desk where did you get his from its brilliant idea to have the angle desk and paper roll attached?
    thanks

  • Reply
    John
    May 30, 2018 at 4:15 pm

    I never thought about how art affects fine motor skills. I can see why holding crayons and utensils could help with that. I want my kids to do art, sports, and an extracurricular to be well rounded.

  • Reply
    Hazel Jennings
    June 10, 2018 at 4:43 am

    I think these tips are helps to teach the children to improve their art skills. learned so many things like art encourages skill which are easily understand. I will apply these on my child. Thanks for the sharing such a helpful article.

  • Reply
    Rosie Beckett
    July 30, 2018 at 11:52 am

    I am thinking of enrolling my children in an art camp this summer and I am glad that I found this article because I did not realize that art has so many benefits for kids. I appreciate that you say art promotes creativity and helps children to think outside of the box and see the world in new ways. Also, the fact that art also helps children to connect with each other is great because this will be an opportunity for my kids to make new friends.

  • Reply
    Millie Hue
    July 31, 2018 at 1:43 am

    It got me when you said that learning art will help the children to develop their problem-solving skills. As you mentioned, they are going to try and combine things to come up with the design or style that they want to create. With that in mind, I have been convinced to make my children join a painting workshop because I want them to experience everything that I can afford for them to develop holistically. I was not able to have that exposure to many things back then which is why I wanted my children to experience this. Thanks!

  • Reply
    Rahul
    August 23, 2018 at 6:54 am

    I think these tips are helpful the kids to enhance their specialty abilities. The Benefits of Art for Kids. I will apply these on my kid. For more information visit https://outofthebox.store/

  • Reply
    outof thebox
    September 5, 2018 at 2:21 am

    that learning art will help the children to develop their problem-solving skills. it’s very helpful to more information visit this site https://outofthebox.store/

  • Reply
    outof thebox
    September 5, 2018 at 2:25 am

    this article because I did not realize that art has so many benefits for kids.it’s very helpful visit this site https://outofthebox.store/

  • Reply
    Amritha menon
    January 23, 2019 at 4:36 am

    Dabbling in art and craft activities can be hugely beneficial to a child’s development and it is never too early to start. Here are 10 reasons why.
    https://www.parentcircle.com/article/why-is-art-and-craft-important-for-your-childs-development/

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