5 Benefits of a Performing Arts Education
Written By: Kayla Colbert | February 14, 2020
performing arts curriculum has on lifelong development!
Once you’ve been bitten by the performing arts bug, there’s not much quite like it. The frets on a guitar’s neck make a melody, the stories and jokes that you crafted culminate with an eruption of laughter and applause, and the individual steps of each person in a group creates a singular, rhythmic wave of inspired imagination.
An ensemble becomes a family. It’s art in motion.
If your child has developed a passion for the arts, it is probably difficult to put into exact words the magic that they experience while on stage, and it keeps them coming back time after time. The joy of show day will surely make powerful, lifetime memories, but the effects on your child’s mental, physical, social, and emotional development will stay with them for years to come, both on and off the stage.
If you are still on the fence about whether performing arts are right for your child, then these undeniable benefits will place you firmly on the side of stagecraft.
Through the performing arts, children can examine and channel their emotions through narrative, music, and movement. Some people find certain feelings more difficult to express and participating in performing arts programs provides children the opportunity to express a range of emotions in a healthy, controlled environment. Learning how to express themselves through art will make it easy for them to creatively express themselves in other situations, be it in school, social gatherings, or future job interviews. Performing arts engage children’s imaginations and lead them to develop their own, distinct voices.
A performing arts education provides children the opportunity to practice stepping outside of their comfort zone in a safe setting. Even after weeks of rehearsal, it takes courage to go out on a limb and accept whatever response comes from being vulnerable on stage. However, once your child lets go of those inhibiting expectations of what is “right” or “wrong,” they’ll relax and let their inner joy shine—they’ll simply just “be.” The confidence that grows when your child performs will translate to every corner of their lives, from educational accomplishments to social ease. Putting yourself out there can be intimidating, but once you’ve been bold enough to sing, dance, and rock out on stage, small talk becomes a cake walk.
Unlike sports games, there are no winners or losers in a theater performance. The only “wins” are when everyone works together to create the best show possible. Performing arts curriculum pushes students to think not only about their contributions to the show individually, but how their own performance can enhance the performance of the show as an ensemble. Children also learn how to lead in a group, especially when they are given the responsibility of playing principal roles. Likewise, older children use their experience and leadership skills to assist younger children through their first performances. Ensembles teach kids that every person has special talents that they bring to the table, and that combining each person’s insights creates mutual success that is powerful and that fosters creative growth.
Various studies have shown that performing arts curriculum has amazingly positive effects on a child’s academic performance. A 2019 article in the scholarly journal Trends in Neuroscience and Education states that arts-integrated education increased the retention of information and the overall subject comprehension of students struggling in language arts and science. It makes sense when you think about it—countless people grew up learning (and still remembering) how government works via “Schoolhouse Rock” songs, and many children today are learning about the Founding Fathers through “Hamilton” lyrics. Memorizing a script uses the same reading comprehension skills that children use in the classroom, and they practice core mathematical concepts as they learn to read music and understand music theory. Performing arts teaches children perseverance, creative problem-solving, and the ability to focus—all great skills that will lead to classroom success.
Embodying another person’s story through acting, voice, dance, and music allows children to walk a mile in someone else’s shoes. Especially when portraying a character dramatically different from themselves, children learn to understand and empathize with other people, respecting important differences but embracing similarities. Learning about people from different communities, countries, and cultures through art allows your child to become an informed, global citizen. Seeing the world through the eyes of someone who is unlike them on the surface fosters kindness, thoughtfulness, and nonjudgmental attitudes, allowing them to form bonds with people from all walks of life.
Trusted for over 30 years, PAW has 10 camp locations to choose from including; Brentwood, West LA, Manhattan Beach, RPV, Redondo Beach, El Segundo, East Pasadena, Old Town Pasadena, Northridge, and Studio City. For camp information call us at (310) 827-8827or check out our website at www.PerformingArtsWorkshops.com.
Part Art…Part Play…ALL FUN!