Understanding the Role of Arts and Drama in Education

Traditionally, we think of education as academic knowledge that is amassed from books. Therefore, aspects such as drama, art, sports, and more are often referred to as “extra-curricular.” However, the fact remains that these areas have an essential role in the child’s education. When you think of it, art can be a massive gateway to understanding history and culture. Similarly, drama can allow for creativity and meaningful expression. With the use of drama, children learn communication skills and creative expression. These powerful tools help a child develop critical life skills such as empathy, critical thinking, and more. They encourage students to think imaginatively, help with self-expression, and more.

Before we discuss the importance of drama and art in education, it is worthwhile to examine their origins.

Origins Of Art and Drama in Education

The origins of drama and art in education can be traced back to ancient civilizations. In ancient Greece, Aristotle spoke about the educational value of drama. Throughout medieval Europe, drama was an essential tool of education. Plays performed in churches educate people about moral values. The Renaissance period also saw the use of drama in the academic curriculum.

Similarly, if we were to trace the origin of art, we would notice that paintings and sculptures in the prehistoric period were used as a means of education and passing down stories. In ancient Egypt and Mesopotamia, art was used to depict societal values. The Renaissance, of course, was known for its artistic brilliance, with artists such as Michelangelo and Leonardo Da Vinci being strong proponents of the art form.

A group of children performing a dance on stage

Role Of Drama and Art in Education

If one considers the importance of art and drama in the context of the modern education system, the following points stand out.

  • Artistic Expression- First and foremost, art and drama are great forms of individual expression. They foster creativity and imagination. In fact, they are important tools with the aid of which students tend to think outside the box. The use of elements such as plot, characters, setting, theme, dialogues, visual elements, music, and more go a long way in enabling students to engage in creative expression as well as aesthetic appreciation.
  • Improved communication- They are an essential form of communication. They give students an outlet to convey not just information but also emotions.
  • Exposure- It is with drama and art that children are exposed to different cultures. They are therefore able to appreciate diversity.
  • Emotional intelligence and empathy- Through these art forms, students are able to connect with their own emotions and those of others, which can go a long way toward fostering healthy relationships.
  • Critical thinking- Understanding and appreciating art forms leads to increased critical thinking and appreciation ability.
  • Stress buster- It goes without saying that these art forms go a long way in alleviating the stress of students battling several pressures, be it academic or social. These art forms allow them an outlet for self-expression and help them give vent to any suppressed thoughts and emotions.
  • Teamwork- Activities such as drama involve teamwork and teach children the need for and importance of collaboration. Similarly, children can collaborate on different art forms, giving them a much-needed lesson in teamwork.
  • Improves confidence- When children can express themselves through these various art forms, it also leads to an increase in self-esteem and confidence. These are essential markers for success in all aspects of later life.
  • Enhanced Academic Performance- We know by now that there are different kinds of learners and that a one-size-fits-all approach doesn’t quite work in terms of learning. Drama and art involve the use of different learning modalities, be they visual or kinesthetic. Their use enriches learning experiences and helps children in their academic journey.
  • Offers career opportunities- Gone are the times when art and drama were looked at as activities that one undertook on the side. These days if children are driven about these areas, there are enough and more opportunities for them to carve out successful careers in these artistic fields.
Two children with painted hands sitting on a table

To Sum Up

The role of art and drama in education cannot be overstated. They allow students to observe keenly while also allowing them to make individual interpretations. That they foster the child’s social and emotional intelligence is essential in their favour. These art forms also help create citizens who are empathetic toward each other, which is a big plus.

At Pragyanam, one of the best CBSE schools in Gurgaon, our mission is to offer holistic education to our students. We endeavor to see that our students are academically sound and emotionally fulfilled. We are committed to equipping our students with the much-needed life skills that enable them to navigate life’s ups and downs easily. We, therefore, follow a life-skills-led curriculum that teaches students the essential skills of empathy, critical thinking, problem-solving, and more. There are many reasons why school admission in Pragyanam is highly coveted.

Here’s to raising a well-rounded generation of learners!

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July 2024