Visual ArtsEnabling creative activities as building blocks towards child development
Creating and appreciating visual aesthetics may be more important than ever to the development of the next generation of children as they grow and learn.
Art education is becoming an integral part of the primary curriculum promoting thinking, imagination and sensitivity and can help social and cultural development and enjoyment of school.
The arts are organised expressions of ideas, feelings and experiences in images, in music, in language, in gesture and in movement. They provide for sensory, emotional, intellectual and creative enrichment and contribute to the child’s holistic development.*
Art education improves a child’s communication skills and encourages ideas and creative thinking helping them to develop a range of intelligences. The current Visual arts curriculum (updated 1999) ranges from junior infants to sixth class. The curriculum consists of six strands:
- Paint and colour
- Fabric and fibre.
A quick look around the corridors and classrooms of Our Lady’s school and it becomes quickly apparent that visual education plays a central role in the children’s daily activities. Drawings and paintings of many hues adorn every millimetre of wall space. Clay sculptures crowd window-sills and embroidered fabrics hang where they can. One must tread carefully not to disturb a drying piece of art awaiting its moment of glory.
There is no let up in the enthusiasm of visual art as the children progress up through the classes with the older children every bit as involved as the younger ones. Looking at the beautiful mural in the school yard will prove this point. Throughout this process the children pick up valuable life skills such as critical thinking, objectivity, problem solving, communication and team work.
This passion for visual art in the school is perhaps best exemplified by Brendan the school’s resident artist who has been teaching children at Our Lady’s the skills of brush work for the past two and a half years. He also provides classes for parents from time to time. Brendan’s work can be seen, jostling with the children’s work for attention, on the walls of the school .