The arts are individual, expressive, creative and a form of communication that engages students in critical and creative thinking and assist them in expressing themselves and understand the world around them. The research conducted the field of arts education highlights the correlation between the arts and cognitive development, social development and the improvement of a student’s emotional wellbeing (Burton, et.al 2004, ACER 2004, Heath & Roach 1999). The impending Australia Curriculum in Arts education, mandates students to engage in and variety of stimulating art forms to facilitate their creative development (ACARA 2012).
* Berk (2004) refers to cognitive development as the way children construct their own knowledge as they manipulate and explore the world around them. Through exposure to the arts Burton, Horowitz and Abeles (2004) found that students on average scored 20 points higher then those with less exposure. This suggests creating a curriculum that incorporates the arts across all key learning areas can provide students with, opportunities to problem solve, make decisions and engage in critical thinking. Noice, Noice, and Staines (2004) speculate engaging in demanding, multi-modal activities such as those provided through arts education, can result in increased cerebral activation and in turn improve cognitive performance. In further studies Noice, Noice, and Staines (2009) found that drama, in particular lead to the enhancement of cognitive abilities. 0
Along with cognitive development the arts have been known to aid in the development of a students social development. Studies conducted by Fiske (1999) and Deasy (2002) have shown convincing evidence of the existence between participation in the arts and benefits for learners in both academic and social development. Students where found to be more confident and able to successfully and appropriately communicate within social situations (Deasy 2002). In addition, a 2004 study...
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