Art graces our lives with the creativity of some of the most talented people we will meet in person, virtually or only through their offerings. Today’s MAD post is dedicated to the artists…and the generation which may be the last to have that grace offered to them at a young age.
When you were in elementary school, did you leave the primary classroom to go to the art room? Bolts of paper. Bins of scissors and hole punches. Clay in every color. No painted surfaces on the walls…all covered in creativity. Remember it fondly. Your children and grandchildren may never know that room.
In terms of a well-rounded education, to leave out the arts is a disservice. Nearly 95% of adults believe the arts are vital to education. Despite those staggering numbers, fewer than 30% of schools maintain payroll and funding for art programs.
Your child spends more time at the locker than in art classes.
Need proof arts really matter? High school students who take four years of arts and music score 100 points higher on the SAT than those who take a semester or less. How much is the coach making again?
Art is good.
When children (and adults) create and appreciate art, they are more tolerant and open to others. They recognize the talent it takes to create beautiful, skilled and thought-provoking art, especially when they discover, hands on, how hard it is. It allows them to appreciate and recognize creative abilities in others.
Art embraces culture and celebrates people and nature. Before man could communicate in words, pictures were the universal language. Cultures are readily identified by their native art. Our history is depicted in millenia old art on every known surface.
Individuality blossoms when art is introduced. Art makes decorative statements in our homes, offices, gathering places and bodies.
Art boosts self-confidence by improving overall academic performance. By tapping into creativity, better problem-solving skills are sharpened. Art can give reference points to history, making it more attractive to students.
You can Make A Difference by choosing to create, appreciate or support art. Choose it for yourself, your family, your children, your community…all of you.
Create a piece of art today. Need help with ideas?
- Go to a hobby or craft store. Ask someone to help you.
- Go to the hardware or DIY center. Look for projects.
- Go to the nursery or garden center. Learn about landscaping.
- Go to the computer store or surf. Buy an art program.
- Go to your child or artistic neighbor. Ask for an idea.
- Go to the library or search engine. Read project books
You do not have to be painting or sculpting to be creating art. Inspiration is everywhere. Media is boundless:
- Plants and flowers
- Pencils, charcoals, pastels, ink
The treatments are only limited by your imagination:
- Air brushing
Just to name a few. Have no technique? Sign up for an art class. Bring a buddy or take one for a different age group. If you are a senior, take a young adult class, or vice versa.
Make a family project. Everyone can finger paint. A box of crayons and some construction paper can become anything in the hands of a child. Embrace your inner child.
Visit a museum. Make a date for an art gallery with (Quaint, Sibling, Mate). Find the nearest (or nearest your vacation spot) sculpture garden.
Volunteer for a local art activity at your local school, community center, senior citizen program, veterans’ home or library.
Purchase from a local artist.
Donate art supplies.
Visit art websites. Share links with your friends and family.
Write a letter:
- To the school district
- To your local and national legislators
- To an art instructor
Letters of appreciation for support of the arts go a long way to continuing the argument to fund art programs. Letters to legislators let them know the public supports the arts as a fundamental necessity to education.
Make A Difference
Art touches and changes lives. Its history is longer than the written word. It lets us communicate across borders and time. Art helps us remember our past, our heritage and our culture.
Art should not be relegated to only the wealthy who can afford to offer it to their children. It must remain as part of the public domain and an element in education.
Can you MAD about art? Make a difference by creating, appreciating and supporting art in all forms.
Have you ever donated a piece of art? Have you ever bid on art in a charity auction? When was the last time you created a piece of art? When was the last time you shared art with a child? Would you write a letter to your legislator to support the arts?
(c) Ann Marie Dwyer 2012
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