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The Second Side

How many cannibals could your body feed?
Created by OnePlusYou

So, I went to my garage to have a smoke. My oldest twin Ethan came down and we started talking about the fact that he lost a tooth. He asked me if when you lose a tooth, “they grow back right?” I said, “As long as they are your baby teeth. The next ones are permanent and don’t grow back when you lose them, so be sure to take care of them.” I then went on to explain that I had not taken care of mine when I was younger and would probably have to have all of them taken out at one time, eventually.

To this he replied, very seriously, “Man, you’re gonna get a lot of money from the Tooth Fairy.”

Just another day.

I Love You. That’s all.

             At some point all of us have listened to music or have seen some kind of artwork.  It could’ve been on the radio, in the elevator, in a department store or even on a billboard.  Music and art are everywhere, some of us just take them for granted even though some form of them are everywhere we look.  Imagine, if you can, getting into your car, turning on your radio, and hearing nothing.  Imagine, someday, being able to go to an art gallery and seeing bare walls.  Doesn’t sound very exciting, does it.

There are those who believe that these programs are not as important to have as other programs are.  With that, some schools are losing their music and art programs altogether. Some are because of funding issues, while others are because of an education law known as No Child Left Behind, which has schools concentrating more on the subjects of math and reading, sometimes at the cost of arts programs.  “Under No Child Left Behind, there is reading and math and then there is everything else. And because so much is riding on the reading and math included on state tests, many schools have cut back time on other important subject areas, which means that some students are not receiving a broad curriculum” (Jennings, 2007, p. 1). 

 Some would say that increasing the amount of math and reading programs at the cost of arts programs is a good idea.  But how good of an idea is it?  Could removing these programs actually be detrimental to the learning process of other programs?

          According to scientific research, a child that is exposed to some form of arts, such as music and art in school, has increased creativity, imagination, self confidence and critical thinking (O’ Farrell, Meban, 2003).  It is also suggested that it may be possible to boost a child’s creativity through a program that is art based (Robinson Report 1999).  It is assumed that most people would already know that a person who is either an artist or a musician has some form of creativity.  What is not widely known is that these programs may stimulate growth in subjects such as math and reading.  Norman M. Weinberger suggests that, “Music is biologically rooted and fundamental to human development” (36-40).  The use of arts programs in schools also helps with hand-eye coordination, as well as things such as balance and physical fitness.  I have personally participated in both art and music and found it very helpful in coordination and dexterity, as well as motor skills and critical thinking.

In 1995 there was a report by The President’s Committee on the Arts and Humanities that suggested that teaching the arts has a significant effect on overall success in school, and also suggested that SAT scores were higher in high school students who took arts courses as opposed to those who did not. I cannot personally say if that is true based on my experience, but I can see how that would get one’s mind thinking outside of the box, so to speak.  Not only do arts programs make an impact on students but also the economy.   “Nationally, the nonprofit arts and culture industry generates $166.2 billion in economic activity every year—$63.1 billion in spending by organizations and an additional $103.1 billion in event-related spending by their audiences” (Americans for the Arts). 

       As you can see having arts in schools may make a significant difference in the way a child learns and develops, along with an impact on the economy from billions of dollars in revenue to be lost. Without arts programs in schools, we take the chance of living in a world with no music, or paintings, or logos for businesses.  All of these things are part of the arts. These are also part of our culture and have been for hundreds of years.  Keeping arts in schools is just a logical choice.

Works Cited

Americans for the Arts Website.  “Arts and Economic Prosperity III: The Economic Impact of Non-Profit Arts and Culture Organizations and Their     Audiences.” [http://www.artsusa.org/information_resources/research_information/services/economic_impact/default.asp] 11/05/2007.

Jennings, Jack.  “As the Majority of School Districts Spend More Time on Reading and Math, Many Cut Time in Other Areas.  Instructional Time for Subjects Not Tested Under No Child Left Behind Has Fallen by Nearly One-Third Since Law Was Passed.”  Center On Education Policy News Release.  07/25/2005.

 

O’Farrel, L, and Meban, M (2003).  “Arts education and instrumental outcomes: an introduction to research, methods and indicators.” UNESCO, Paris

Robinson Report(1999).  “All our future: creativity,cultures & education.”  Department of Education and Employment, HMSO, London.

Weinberger, Norman M. (1998).  “Educational Leadership: How The Brain Learns.  Music in our Minds.” [http://www.ascd.org].

Jimmy wins!

Best screenplay in Nebraska! He needs to not post any of it for copyright reasons, I would assume, but he won. I have always been impressed by my brother. He has always accomplished what he has set out to do. Well done, Jim, well done.