How art could improve our schools

by NickM on February 2, 2015 - 10:06pm

Original title: An education in art brings therapy to children

Author: Roxanne Nelson

Publication: The Globe and Mail (reuters)

Publication date: January 19th, 2015


In our school boards today, depression and behavioural problems are a common issue.  These conditions are problematic because they limit students’ ability to focus and learn. Luckily, schools in Great Britain have found a method to help children between the ages of 5 and 16 who are dealing with such conditions. They have introduced “the Art Room program”, which “is aimed at children […] who have been identified by their teachers as needing emotional and behavioural support”. Therefore, children can take part in art sessions held in these rooms to help them focus and increase their self-esteem by expressing their creativity in a positive setting.

In a study conducted by Melissa Cortina, a research psychologist from Oxford University, this Art Program has shown that students’ behaviour have improved significantly after having attended the art room for a 10-week period. In the numbers, the Art Program has demonstrated a “41-per-cent reduction in conduct problems, a 33-per-cent reduction in hyperactivity, a 41-per-cent reduction in problems with classmates and a 24-per-cent improvement in social behaviour”. In addition, the number of depressed students prior to enrolment in the program, which represented 22 per-cent in the program, decreased to an astonishing 4 per-cent after having participated in the program.

I believe that this Art Program has proven to be very effective in Great Britain, considering that the success of this program reflect on the students who have participated in it. I also believe that Canada’s Ministry of Education should incorporate a similar program in schools across the nation in order to give support to student who are in need of it. They would also improve students’ learning abilities as well as their academic experiences.

I believe that the source provided below is reliable because it discusses a study conducted by a research psychologist from Oxford University, who I believe to be a reliable authority on the subject.