Wright (2012) advocates teachers to “raise public consciousness by clearly and passionately articulating the unique and highly important role that the arts play in perception and cognition, and why this is significant for the education of children and the future of society” (p. 202). In recognition of this, the arts should be given more significance in preschools and early childhood centres because of the benefits children can derive from it. The arts should not only be used as ‘fillers’ after the main academic components of the curriculum have been completed, but it merits its own schedule specifically for children to indulge in it.
Epstein (2001) echoes that inclusion of art in the early childhood curriculum would enhance other areas of children’s development, specifically in perception, cognition, fine motor skills, language and social interaction. Activities such as drawing, painting, moulding with clay are very rewarding for them. Wright (2012) contends that children can easily manipulate markers, pencils, crayons, etc. With these, they can easily explain things with precision and detail. Since they may not be adept in writing yet, drawing becomes a way to concretize their thoughts on paper. McArdle (2008) explains that in this way, art can serve as a window to the child because what one sees in his art work may be a reflection of his ideas or feelings.
Children delight in musical experiences. With music, they engage in listening, moving, singing and playing/creating (Haines & Gerber, 2000; Wright, 2012; Ministry of Education, 1993). They are easily captivated by musical sounds and sometimes allow their bodies to feel the rhythm and they just move to the beat. It does not take special skills and competencies to enjoy music, and everyone, regardless of ability can participate in music experiences, as they are stimulating to the senses, ...Show more