Why is it important to teach Art in the early childhood classroom?
Young children feel a sense of emotional satisfaction when they are
involved in making art, whether they are modeling with clay, drawing
with crayons, or making a collage from recycled scraps. This
satisfaction comes from the control children have over the materials
they use and the autonomy they have in the decisions they make. Deciding
what they will make and what materials they will use may be the first
opportunity children have to make independent choices and decisions.
Making art also builds children's self-esteem by giving them
opportunities to express what they are thinking and feeling. When
children participate in art activities with classmates, the feedback
they give to each other builds self-esteem by helping them learn to
accept criticism and praise from others. Art activities also help
children practice important social skills like taking turns, sharing,
and negotiating for materials.
For very young children, making art is a sensory exploration
activity. Exploring materials is very important because it is through
exploration that children build knowledge of the objects in the world
In the art classes I will be conducting with your children I will be
using art reproductions and actual pieces of artwork. Reproductions of
Masterpiece art provide children with another way of seeing and thinking
about the concepts they are learning.
Through art activities, young children will develop abilities and skills
that have application in many other areas of the curriculum. Most
importantly, however, children will also develop an appreciation for the
art of other people and cultures, and the confidence to express their
own thoughts and feelings through art.
From the article:
Art in Early Childhood: Curriculum
Connections By Jill Englebright Fox, Ph.D., and Stacey