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The Forgotten Lesson: Why Understanding the "Why" of Art Matters


In the realm of education, art is often taught as a skill – a series of techniques to master, strokes to perfect, and colors to blend. Yet, in the rush to teach the "how" of art, we often neglect the most fundamental question: why do art in the first place?

From the earliest years of schooling, students are handed brushes, taught perspective, and encouraged to create. Seldom are they given the chance to explore the deeper purpose behind their creations. Why should we pick up a paintbrush or sculpting tool? What drives the human spirit to create?

Understanding the "why" of art is not just about fostering creativity; it's about nurturing empathy, cultivating critical thinking, and forging connections across cultures and time. Art is a reflection of the human experience – a canvas upon which we can express our deepest emotions, challenge societal norms, and envision new possibilities.

By neglecting to teach the "why" of art, we miss out on an opportunity to empower students to engage with the world in a profound and meaningful way. When students grasp the significance of art beyond mere technique, they are better equipped to explore their own identities, navigate complex emotions, and contribute meaningfully to society.

Imagine a curriculum that not only teaches students how to paint or draw but also delves into the rich tapestry of art history, explores the role of art in social change, and encourages students to find their own voice through creative expression. Such an approach would not only enrich students' artistic abilities but also foster a deeper appreciation for the power of art to shape the world around us.

In a world that often prioritises standardized testing and rote memorisation, it's time to reevaluate the way we teach art in schools. Let's not just teach students how to do art; let's show them why art matters. By doing so, we can unlock the potential for creativity, empathy, and understanding that lies within each and every one of us.

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