As the owner of a performing arts school, I often get feedback from parents and students that participating in performance-based arts programs provide peripheral skills that they credit to increased academic achievement, the proven benefits of artistically-inclined programs shouldn’t be overlooked or dismissed: Increasing your child’s confidence and EQ can ultimately increase their academic success and IQ.
My favourite feedback is not necessarily that they got a part in a school play, or booked a commercial, or got an agent, but rather that their teachers have noticed a real change in their child’s confidence; they are making eye contact when they present in front of the class, are having more fun working with others, don’t beat themselves up when they fail, rather they accept constructive feedback and strive to improve, and my favourite – they are speaking up and confidently sharing their ideas and answers in class.
Some of the benefits of performance arts include:
- Learning to Fail: In theatre classes, “failing” is celebrated; trying things, taking risks, sometimes it works, sometimes it doesn’t, but it’s important to have a safe environment to take these risks. knowing they have the capacity to recover quickly, to learn and move on, to “get back up again” can be reassuring.
- Empathy: Theatre teaches students to step into another person’s shoes (through character work, etc.), to think about other points of view/differences of opinion. It’s so important, today more than ever, to learn to be accepting and to understand different points of view, different backgrounds, cultures, and diversity.
- Problem Solving: Theatre shapes young minds into becoming great problem solvers; whether it’s reciting a script, getting into character, or expressing emotion through song, the creative arts help to empower kids to use their imaginations to create scenes, to remove barriers or constraints encouraging them to think ‘outside of the box’, share new perspectives, and tell a story in a unique way while working in a team environment.
- Confidence: Dipping their toes in various theatre methods such as Improvisation, for example, can help ease the fear of public-speaking and sharing ideas as well as help develop their self-esteem to help overcome anxiety and self-doubt. Even asking questions in class and volunteering to answer questions will become less daunting.
Stagecoach is the world’s largest network of performing arts schools, with performing arts schools worldwide. Stagecoach aims to make a difference in its students lives by teaching Creative Courage for Life, with some students going on to be professionals and world-renowned actors, singers and dancers. Early Stages classes are available for children aged 4 to 6 and Main Stages classes take place for 6 to 16-year–olds every weekend. For more information about Stagecoach West Island please visit their website at https://www.stagecoachschools.ca/westisland