At TopperQ, we remember our first day in writing school. We shuffled in, bright eyed, full of coffee, ironic beret planted firm on our head. The lecturer coughed, undid the buttons on his leather-pocketed jacket, and spoke. He asked us how many of us had hope that we’d make money from our art. Some of us put up our hands. He sent those people out of the room, instilling that art was studied for passion, not pounds. We’re pleased to say, that attitude wasn’t one we’ve experienced (take THAT, Ariel); but this stigma has followed the creative arts since they became available in schools. Thankfully, there is a light at the end of the tunnel - the benefits of creative arts have been studied, and it’s official, there are many.
So, if your mini-human is on the verge of being the next Mozart, but you’re on the fence - don’t despair. We at TopperQ have compiled a list of our favourite reasons why creative subjects are also important for your children.
Nostalgia often causes us to look back on our childhood through rose-tinted glasses. A time when everything was simpler; and the mere sight of a fluffy kitten could fill us with delight and wonder. Truth is, our brains are programmed to help us forget traumatic experiences. Childhood is hard. We’re awash with new emotion, thought, and feeling we try to work through. This brings us to our first benefit of the creative arts, the fact that your child will be able to channel their internal emotions.
The relationship between creativity and emotional expression in adults is well-documented, and often romanticized. In children, studies have shown that the creative arts can help channel anxiety and stress emotions that young children may not otherwise be able to express. In fact, there is a link between childhood creative expression, and adult wellbeing - not to mention your child will discover a passion they can take with them all the way through to adulthood.
Improved Motor Skills
If you’ve got kids, there’s no doubt you’ll have been to the circus. We bet you’ve gasped at the many shapes of the contortionist, or found the clown’s capers so funny you can’t help but laugh! But, did you know, Clowning is considered a form of high-performance art? Teach your children to act, dance, or clown - and they’ll learn the fundamentals of perfect posture and the special space around them. Even less physical creative activity like the ability to draw a picture, colour between the lines, sculpt or create homemade cards, can help develop dexterity and increase concentration.
The most famous artists will be the first to tell you, practice makes perfect.
Here at TopperQ, we wrote our first piece of play when we were six. It was called Diamonds in the Attic. There were diamonds, and they were lost. Can you guess where they were found? Since the day we wrote it, we learnt importance of Occam's Razor. That’s a pretty big concept for a six-year-old. We’re also glad to report our plotlines are now a bit better. If we rewrote it, the diamonds would probably be hidden in the walls. In a parallel universe. By space cats.
There’s no I in Team
Another creative cliché is the lonely artist, with an arm full of whiskey, lamenting their lost love. Truth is, most art is a collaborative process. Even the greatest solo artists have a team behind them to help with edits, revisions, or simply just opinions on the creation in hand. Creative subjects are important for your children, as it teaches them the beauty of collaboration. What better way to learn about the mindset and views of other people, than for your child to collaborate on a creative project? The world is better when we work together, to achieve a goal that none of us could alone. If you allow your child to experience this in a microclimate, it’ll allow them to take this experience outside and into adulthood - and who knows what they will achieve!
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