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Arts affect student learning

By Alexis Sanchez

Staff Writer

Some studies report that researchers see no evidence that arts affect student learning, while others report that they have seen academic improvement from students who are involved in the arts.

post showing “10 Salient Studies on the Arts in Education” from The Center for Online Education has an article on a 2002 report by the Arts Education Partnership which reveals that students who are “exposed to drama, music and dance are often more proficient at reading, writing and math.”

However, a New York Times article, from 2007, cites the continuing debate around a 2000 study from the Harvard Graduate School of Education which found that arts don’t actually improve academic performance.

Are arts interfering with students’ work, or are they helping students with their work?Students from two different Redwood City schools said participating in the arts has helped them with their studies:

 

Miriam Yopihua, a freshman from Woodside High School Redwood City, plays the piano.

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Miriam Yopihua, a freshman from Woodside High School Redwood City

 

Q: What type of art do you do?

A: “I do piano, music.”

Q: Why did you decide to join piano?

A: “My teacher from second grade told me that she used to be a piano teacher, and she used to take us to the piano lab, and I started getting interested in it, and I started playing it.”

Q: Did it help you in any way in school, or did it interfere with your work? If you had homework or anything, did it interfere with your work, or did it help?

A: “No, not really, but it did help.”

Q: What did you like about it?

A: “I like the different type of tones that each key had.”

Q: If you could change learning piano to any other type of art, what would you choose?

A: “Probably the violin.”

Q: How does it affect your learning? Did it help you in any way, say when you would get stressed?

A: “Oh yeah, it helps me calm me down.”

Q: What do you believe schools would be like without arts?

A: “Boring and quiet because everybody listens to music no matter what type it is.”

 

Xitlalli Ramos, a freshman from Woodside High School in Redwood City, plays multiple instruments. 

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Xitlalli Ramos, a freshman from Woodside High School in Redwood City

Q: What type of art do you do?

A: “Music.”

Q: Why did you decide to join music?

A: “I played the instruments; I like music, and they needed a bassist.”

Q: Does music help you in any way with your schoolwork, or does it interfere with your work?

A: “It helps me with math because it’s related.”

Q: What do you like about music?

A:“Just that it’s fun, and I like math too, so it kinda helps me.”

 

Q: If you could change from music to any type of art, what would you change it to?

A: “I would probably do art like ceramics.”

Q: Who does it affect your learning other than math?

A: “It kinda helps me keep focus, like how I focus reading the notes.”

Q: Has music ever bothered your studying? Or have you ever lost time to do work?

A: “I don’t think so.”

Q: What do you believe schools would be like without arts?

A: “I don’t think it would be much creative, and it wouldn’t be any fun, like people would need to find new ways to help kids because I believe that music helps kids learn things like alphabets.”

 

Britanny Vasces, a freshman from Sequoia High School in Redwood City, participates in visual art classes.

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Britanny Vasces, a freshman from Sequoia High School in Redwood City

Q: What type of art do you do?

A: “Normal art classes where they teach you shading, proportions and stuff like that.”

Q: Why did you decide to join art?

A: “Because I always liked art. It’s one of my favorite topics in school.”

Q: What do you like about it?

A: “I like how people can express themselves with it, and how without using words you can understand what they’re saying.”

Q: If you could change the type of art you are in, what would you change it to?

A: “I guess dance. I would change it to a more private kind of way.”

Q: How did it affect your learning?

A: “It made me pay more attention in class. I try to draw what I’m learning sometimes.”

Q: So it helped you in school instead of interfering?

A: “Yeah, yeah it did. It didn’t interfere with my work.”

Q: What do you believe schools would be like without arts?

A: “I guess pretty boring. Sad.”

 

 

 

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