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To think if more emphasis was put on the arts in schools then core subjects would fall into place

(150 Posts)
ConfuciousSayWhat Wed 20-Apr-16 11:55:01

I get that the funds aren't there for the arts and that in times of funding cuts they are the first thing to go, but Aibu to think the arts support academic learning?

Music opens up maths, languages, science
Drama opens up literature and languages
Art opens up maths, physics, biology

Nevermind how they feed into technology, design and architecture.

Aibu to be saddened at the loss of focus on the arts in schools?

GraysAnalogy Wed 20-Apr-16 11:57:05

I think it's sad that there's less focus on them but I'm not sure I agree with your examples of the arts opening up into the other subjects.

gleam Wed 20-Apr-16 12:22:20

Can't see it myself. My academic, introverts hated drama, but did well in English and Eng Lit.
I disliked music but loved languages.

ConfuciousSayWhat Wed 20-Apr-16 12:29:52

just one article about it the links have been there for decades

gleam Wed 20-Apr-16 12:34:15

Rogue comma there.

Sounds like it's too late by secondary, according to that article.

Balletgirlmum Wed 20-Apr-16 12:34:26

Drama & music has kept my son in school, provided him with the self esteem to attempt other subjects that he finds harder. I can't emphasise enough how important it's been for him.

Sparklingbrook Wed 20-Apr-16 12:34:27

I have two teen boys who could not wait to drop Music, Drama and Art and would have hated to be made to continue with them.
Do the other subjects need 'opening up'? confused

alwayseatinglollies Wed 20-Apr-16 12:35:03

I think that the loss of music (which by the way has been shown to enhance academic achievement, but is also v valuable in its own right) is a huge pity. You just need one enthusiastic teacher to provide lunchtime music clubs, and it can make a big difference to a school. And drama creates self-confidence and presentation skills, as well as an appreciation of English literature.

HildaOgdensMuriel Wed 20-Apr-16 12:35:47

Back in the 70s we sang as a class a lot in my primary, similar perhaps to the Finnish schooling described. I believe they do a lot of singing in Estonia too, a bit of a relic from Soviet methods apparently.

ReallyTired Wed 20-Apr-16 12:38:36

I think children need greater choice in what they study. The EBAC is destroying the arts. It's not just the arts, but vocational subjects. Most of us use about 5 % what we learnt at school, but it's hard to know which 5%.

We have really had to fight to allow my son to drop both geography and history. Both his geography and history teachers made it clear they didn't want him. His music and drama teachers are keen to have him.

smalllondon Wed 20-Apr-16 12:39:02

I absolutely agree.. It is such a shame this Governments annihilation of the Arts. We're not all born to be academics, creativity should be encouraged. I think young children need a mix.

GraysAnalogy Wed 20-Apr-16 12:39:12

I took two Sciences, IT, Business Studies, Statistics, Numeracy, English Lit and Lang.

I absolutely hated the arts and couldn't wait to drop them so I could focus on something more academic. For the short time I studied the arts (lower years were mandatory) I found very little that aided my more academic subjects. I didn't find that making a collage, or learning a song helped me.

For some people those are subjects they wish to pursue and I think they should be available but I don't think their availability should be built on the premise of them 'opening up' other subjects.

ReallyTired Wed 20-Apr-16 12:46:53

Music is a ferociously academic subject. Grade 6 and above gives you UCAS points. Grade 8 guitar might help you get into an ex poly to study computer science if you slip a grade in your third A-level. A potential computer science will need a level maths and a science, but if they messed their business studies A level then a grade 8 guitar pass might get them out of a hole.

Our schools have had more of a back to basics approach. It'd more important a child learns to read and write than play Suzuki. There has to be a balance.

Itinerary Wed 20-Apr-16 12:50:27

I think a rounded and balanced education should include the arts as well as all the other subjects. There's plenty of time to specialise and narrow things down by taking options for GCSE, A-level, choosing a university subject and/or settling on a type of work.

ifyoulikepinacolada Wed 20-Apr-16 13:05:12

Surely english lit is an art subject greys analogy? I have a degree in classics for which I learned to read and write in two dead languages. That's an arts subject. It helped me enormously when i was learning to code. I'm genuinely shocked you consider it less academic than IT.

Ickythumpsmum Wed 20-Apr-16 13:06:25

So many wonderful points here. I want to add that music helps develop self discipline, concentration, and confidence. These are essential skills that everyone should take forward in life.

Music is such a huge subject, that if taken seriously everyone can be good at it. Terrible singer? You might just be the best drummer in the world. No rhythm? You might still love listening to and analysis works by the great composers. Perhaps modern music and technology is your thing. There really is something for everyone.

To the posters who feel like they didn't benefit from music at school / or their kids couldn't wait to get right back to their academic subjects. I bet singing those songs gave them a lift and enabled them to go back to their 'academics' refreshed and able to concentrate.

What a dull world it would be without music, and what a dull school day too.

GraysAnalogy Wed 20-Apr-16 13:08:15

My wording was wrong, by arts I mean drama, art, music. By academics I meant english, IT, business, science etc.

That isn't to say english isn't an art, and that music can't be academic, just that in this scenario I meant to separate the two - and did it poorly.

manicinsomniac Wed 20-Apr-16 13:10:15

Not sure, tbh.

I'm a performing arts teacher (mainly drama and dance but some responsibilities in music dept too) and, although I (obviously!) think my subjects are hugely beneficial and a vital part of a school curriculum, I'm not convinced that the core subjects would fall into place by putting more emphasis on the arts.

Arts education is a much needed part of a broad, balanced education and enhances the school experience of many. But I don't think it does much to improve English and maths that isn't done within English and maths anyway. (eg, I also teach a bit of English and speaking and listening/drama elements are covered in that curriculum too.)

GraysAnalogy Wed 20-Apr-16 13:10:35

I bet singing those songs gave them a lift and enabled them to go back to their 'academics' refreshed and able to concentrate

I actually sung because I was part of a choir, I loved singing. But for me at school and when having to chose something to have a GCSE in I didn't want to have to take music. Sure for the earlier years before options, it's great and gives people an opportunity to explore the subjects. Later, I'm glad I could drop them. Some people in the lower sets didn't get this opportunity they HAD to take music or art. I always found that odd.

ValancyJane Wed 20-Apr-16 13:13:20

I don't agree that the core subjects would fall into place, but I do think it's disgraceful that there is less emphasis on the arts. I teach science which some students with the best will in the world (and all the intervention thrown at them) just don't 'get'. I always like seeing them thrive in other areas of the curriculum.

Sparklingbrook Wed 20-Apr-16 13:15:26

I hated singing at school. If we didn't sing in assembly we all had to stay in at break. sad My two boys also don't like singing even thought they were made to all through First/Middle school.

VestalVirgin Wed 20-Apr-16 13:20:29

I think the whole system is broken and needs changing. The focus on the "useful" is but a symptom.

Not sure how this is in the UK; but when I went to school, the arts were not there for the enjoyment of their beauty, they were subjects just like the others, where we had to function.
It felt like a waste of time, as we wouldn't need it for our future, and the fun to be had there was ... limited.

VestalVirgin Wed 20-Apr-16 13:22:33

My two boys also don't like singing even thought because they were made to

Fixed that for you.

School didn't manage to make me hate singing, but they certainly tried.
I can still remember the humiliation when my primary school teacher told me I couldn't sing properly and accused me of not trying hard enough. We were made to sing solo, in front of the whole class.

Lonecatwithkitten Wed 20-Apr-16 13:22:34

There is a big campaign for steam not stem in schools this is the website.

specialsubject Wed 20-Apr-16 13:23:55

I got thrown out of the art class because I can't see clashing colours and can't draw. I got ignored in the drama class because I can't act.

doesn't seem to have affected my core skills. Hasn't left me with a good impression of the arts though!

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