I teach The Arts every day – not surprising as I am a performing arts specialist teacher. As a generalist primary teacher, I also taught The Arts every single day. I know other teachers who ensure students experience and express in through and about The Arts every day.
Through drama and dance my students can explore not only rich concepts in science, social studies and health but importantly, human concepts such as friendship, fairness, winning/losing, loss, anxiety, complex relationships, fears, power, change, adventure, kindness ….. the list is long.
In drama, being in role allows us to try out viewpoints and ways of being that are different to ourselves – and sometimes the same. The discussions we have are fantastic as we unpack what it means to have feelings and what we do with those. We speculate why these situations may occur. We connect with the experiences that we have had that are similar to that of a role. Through Arts, we experience a way of transforming the way we view the world and how we think.
The Arts allow us to connect with other people and understand that we are not alone in our experiences of growing up and being a person in the world. It is my belief that The Arts are essential to understanding ourselves and other, for understanding culture and society and the way it continues to change over time.
We are teaching people - sometimes with smaller shoes – but real people. Therefore, we should ensure that students have time and space to explore these human connections through the frame of The Arts. We are preparing them for today, not for some job that doesn’t exist yet, not because one day they will live the “real world”, not for some future trend, but for right now. Right now, the young people in our care are figuring out what it means to be human. Today.
The Arts are the expression of what it means to be human. Sharing expressions of culture, reflecting a moment in time and most often, expressing the feelings we experience in our daily lives and connecting with others.