In case you’re stumped, we’ve put together a list of possible goals for you to fill in on your My Beginners School Contract.
Improve Test Scores
Who it helps: Students, Children
Studies show that learning an art form can help improve test scores among students.
“…that learning in the arts may be uniquely able to boost learning and achievement for young children, students from economically disadvantaged circumstances, and students needing remedial education.” —Critical Links, Learning in the Arts and Student Academic and Social Development, 2002
“…students who participate in the arts outperform their peers on virtually every level.”–Champions of Change: The Impact of the Arts on Learning, 1999
“…children motivated in the arts develop attention skills and memory retrieval that also apply to other subject areas”–Learning, Arts, and the Brain, 2008
Improve Social Connectivity
Who it helps: Students, Adults, Workers, Seniors
By developing a new interest or hobby, you open yourself up to a more diverse group of friends. If you become interested in plein air painting, for instance, you could join a plein air painting group in your area. There are a lot of social groups you can meet up with on a regular basis depending on your chosen focus (sculpting, oil painting, watercolor, etc.). Even if you decide against creating with other people, many artistic groups also have activities such as going to museums or gallery shows together.
Improve Personal Creativity/Future Employment Success
Who it helps: Students, Adults, Workers, Seniors
Learning an art form, whatever kind, gets your brain working in ways it probably hadn’t before. By unleashing a new way of thinking about things, you’re better able to problem solve in every day life. Creative learning is an essential part of “thinking outside the box.”
“If preparing your kids for a world in which hard-working, knowledgeable people are unemployable frightens you then I have some good news: There is a solution…… Like most good solutions it requires a trait that is distinctly human.I’m speaking about creativity. Send your kids to art school. Heavily invest time and resources into their creative literacy. Do these things and they will stand a chance at finding work and or fulfillment.” (quote originally appeared on RocketCityMom.com.)
Maintain/Improve Mental Cognition And Overall Health
Who it helps: Seniors
Learning a new skill isn’t just for young people–in fact, it may be even more beneficial to seniors. Lifelong learning has shown to increase and maintain mental cognition in those over the age of 60. Retirees may find themselves bored without a regular schedule or work. Learning a new skill can help combat those retiree blues.
“…seniors who participate in art programs have better health, fewer doctor visits, less medication usage, and more involvement in overall activities…”–The Creativity and Aging Study: The Impact of Professionally Conducted Cultural Programs on Older Adults, 2006
“Having an artistic hobby in both middle and old age made older adults in a Mayo Clinic study 73 percent less likely to experience cognitive decline.” —You Must Remember This, Beth Howard, AARP Magazine, August/September 2016
Increase Family Connection
Who it helps: Children, Students, Adults, Workers, Seniors
In the fast-paced world we live in today, it can often be easy to let family connections slip–we work late, get busy, things happen. Maybe the kids are glued to their video games or cell phones. We check our email before, during, and after dinner. Then before you know it, it’s bedtime and no one has really connected in a real and meaningful manner.
By learning and practicing a new skill together with your family or one member of it, you can rekindle that bond. Not only will you connect on a deeper level, but you’ll have fun doing it, creating happy memories for years to come.
Who it helps: Students, Adults, Workers
It’s easy to get caught up in chores and to-do lists and forget to make time for yourself. By signing your My Beginners School Contract, you’re making a commitment to do something relaxing and exciting for yourself at least once a week. By scheduling a time to focus on something you enjoy, you’re decreasing your stress levels, leading to a greater sense of personal fulfillment, better sleep, and even greater health (stress is hard on your body and can cause all sorts of ailments like high blood pressure, heart disease, and unwanted weight gain or loss to name a few).
Who it helps: Children, Students, Adults, Workers, Seniors–everyone!
By committing to yourself and learning a new skill, you’re increasing your self-confidence! Even if your artwork won’t hang in the Louvre, you’ve at least followed through on a personal goal and that alone will make you feel better about yourself.
- Make Gifts For Friends & Family
- Improve My Home Decor
- Teach A Child/Grandchild
Do you have any personal goals you’d like to share with us? Comment in the section below or tell us using our Contact Form!