Why Kenyan Parents Should Encourage a Love for Art in Their Children

September 14, 2021

The value of creative expression and activity can not be understated; youngsters exposed to the arts as children (dance, music, theatre, and visual art) tend to be more self-assured and expressive as adults and have healthy mediums for communicating emotion.

They may also improve problem-solving abilities as well as discipline and teamwork skills. Artistic endeavors can help children learn how to communicate, take risks, and research and understand the world around them. 

Participation in the arts is equally as vital for the development of well-rounded youngsters as academics and athletics. Raising a child is perhaps more nuanced than ever, and parents have the powerful opportunity to shape their children’s lives by encouraging them to pursue their passions.

Self-help books, parenting classes, and workshops alike emphasize the importance of self-care, understanding emotions, and trying new things. Each of these goals can be accomplished by pursuing the arts, whether it be through active participation or just appreciation.

We are lucky in Kenya to have so many upcoming opportunities for children to explore and engage in the arts, whether it is by acting in a children’s theatre play, visiting a world-class art gallery, or taking courses at a professional dance school. 

This was not always the case. With the development of the nation and rising living standards, there are more opportunities today than there ever were. And we should take full advantage of it.

How Art Can Benefit Children

So, what are some specific ways that a love for the arts helps shape a child into a well-rounded adult? Let’s take a closer look:

* Cognitive advancement: Art may assist youngsters in learning and practicing concepts such as patterning and cause and effect. They can also exercise critical thinking skills by generating a mental plan or drawing what they want to produce and then carrying it out.

* Language abilities: Language skills are developed as youngsters discuss and share their artwork and process. You may help this growth by actively listening and responding to open-ended inquiries. It is also an excellent chance for them to acquire new vocabulary words related to their project.

* Math abilities: Children may learn, produce, and comprehend ideas such as size, form, comparison, counting, and spatial reasoning.

* Art fosters creativity: Creativity is the ability to think outside the box and connect seemingly unrelated concepts in novel ways. Creativity is related to big issue solutions and breakthroughs of all types. The capacity to be creative is critical to our children’s success and the well-being of our planet.

* Art is a great way to improve fine motor skills: Drawing dots and lines with a paintbrush, mixing colors with a paintbrush, cutting with scissors, handling a glue stick or squeezing a glue bottle, kneading, and rolling playdough, and shredding paper all need improved dexterity and coordination.

How to Encourage a Love for Art

Getting children to try new things, especially things that seem challenging, is no easy task, so just how might you go about actively encouraging a love for the arts?

Of course, it’s impossible to force something that just doesn’t fit, but there are lots of ways to get involved with art that don’t necessarily require skill or heavy time commitments. 

Bring the arts to your family. 

Art appreciation may be a fun activity for the whole family. It’s never too early to start inspiring the next generation of art lovers. Visit area museums, theatres, exhibitions, and musical performances.

Get rid of the stress. 

Pressure and creativity are like oil and water. They don’t get along with young children, who need more diversity and flexibility in their self-expression.

When your child engages in an artistic hobby or activity, be sure to emphasize that perfection isn’t the goal. Make sure your child sees art as a way to relax or remove themselves from stressful situations, not create them.

Appreciate the arts yourself

Children often show an interest in the same sort of activities others in their lives do. Curtain a passion for the arts within yourself as a parent is a great way to pass this habit on to others; bring art into your home consistently and meaningfully, and its value will stick.

About the author
Marie Miguel has been a writing and research expert for nearly a decade, covering a variety of health- related topics. Currently, she is contributing to the expansion and growth of a free online mental health resource with BetterHelp.com.

With an interest and dedication to addressing stigmas associated with mental health, she continues to specifically target subjects related to anxiety and depression.

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