arts in education

Power of Performing Arts

An interest in a performing art leads to a high state of motivation that produces the sustained attention necessary to improve performance and the training of attention that leads to improvement in other domains of cognition.

(Gazzainga, PhD, Michael S. Arts and Cognition: Finding Hints of Relationships. From Learning, Arts, and the Brain from the Dana Foundation, 2008.)

Does this mean that we, performing artists, and our field, performing arts, really do have the ability to make a difference in peoples lives? When I teach theatre to kids for 6 weeks or even 30 weeks, does it lead them to a higher state of motivation? Does it improve their attention in other domains?

If so, what does it mean for the art?

If not, what does it mean for the other domains?

And isn’t there a value in learning to create and love art and its process? I love that arts in education may impact other domains of learning so strongly, but I do worry that we are losing the art.

XO

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