Let’s face it, arts and drama are considered extra-curricular activities when we think of what we expect to learn in school. In fact, arts and drama usually fall in line with extra-curricular activities, which are deemed by most as not as important as learning science, English or math. The indifference to arts and drama may have been brought about by the super high technology lifestyles that we lead. Today, many people are exposed to a culture that is so tarnished with modernity that they have forgotten just what real art and culture is like.
This is why it is important to teach arts and drama at school, to save future generations from being illiterate of what truly comprises culture. Drama often is associated with English, however it is not given any real focus.
How about dance? Dance is a part of physical education and is taught (sad to say) by teachers whose sole training was a short course that really interferes with their true inclination which is playing hockey, netball, football, or rugby. Music is also taught but only up to age 14. Let us not forget that art is a vital part of technology and should never be construed as a thing of the past.
The non-inclusion of arts and drama in the education curriculum is a clear indication that arts are no longer treated as important. But contrary to this belief, there have been various studies conducted on the effects of arts in students. The result shows significant achievement especially in terms of the behavior displayed by students that are exposed to arts.
Most students that are constantly exposed to various types of arts have exhibited above average intelligence, especially in the areas of mathematics, English and science. Likewise, there have been noteworthy improvements in the overall personality of students, such as a more matured perception of things in almost every aspect of their lives.
In addition, students who are taught arts and drama tend to cultivate a deeper sense of respect, not only for arts and drama but also for their fellow classmates.
But how to teach arts and drama at school?
Arts and drama are easily appreciated by students and therefore would not pose any problem when it comes to teaching its principles to students. However, not every student is inclined to arts and drama. There are some students who like arts only and who shun away from drama. Likewise, there are those who prefer drama over arts. And so the problem now is how to teach both arts and drama and still be able to get students to appreciate both.
Live discussions often help, especially in conducting drama class. Encouraging students to participate is a great way to slowly introduce them to the wonderful world of drama. If possible try to search for materials that match the interests of the students. Remember to show your appreciation for whatever effort is exerted by your students. Appreciating achievements of students, no matter how miniscule, is important in developing their self-confidence. Who knows, the next time you ask for auditions you may be surprised to find that everyone in the class would like to join in.
Teaching art is probably easier since it’s more of a hands-on activity. As a teacher, never expect your students to be all artistically inclined. There will always be those who find art-class a waste of their time. But with a large amount of patience you can help these students to fully express their creative sides in their artwork. Sometimes all a student needs is a little encouragement to perk up her creative side, and as a teacher it is your responsibility to help these budding artists develop their full potential.