At Santo Niño, Art is considered “essential” as well as “special.” Often efforts to reform schools the focus is placed on the “core” subjects only. Art is often left behind as educators and parents become preoccupied with test scores. Our society asks: Art is nice but what does it offer our children? What does Art really teach?
First, Art teaches children to make judgments and decisions in the absence of rules. Art rules come from the child’s own need to express themselves. Students come to feel their way into what makes a piece of art “right”, even when there is no “wrong”.
Secondly, Art problems have more then one solution. Multiple choice testing does not apply to creating art, all involves multiple choices. Art is a tactile lesson which follows each individual’s growth, which rarely has a single correct answer. Creative problem solving is a much sought after skill.
Thirdly, Art is flexible. When creating art the goal often changes as the art piece will dictate what it needs for completion and rightness. Creative thinking is not an assembly line. Art is not manufactured. Art has a surprise at the end for the artist and the viewer. Art loves chance. Picasso once stated that his best art pieces started out as mistakes.
Fourthly, a picture says 1000 words. Sometime what cannot be spoken, or put into written words can be expressed eloquently in Art. It’s not a place for numbers and equations. Art provides forms of communication that cross language barriers and can unify a community or call for reform.
Finally, Art is about joy. Art is an experience to move through, to provide enrichment and to help us discover our capacity to feel. Santo Niño artists’ express their world, their thoughts and their perspectives. For the mission of the Art room is “to learn by doing for life long creativity as an expression of our gifts from God.”