Art is one of EOBA’s oldest and most critical programs. Creating art has been proven for decades to provide benefits in stress relief, critical thinking, academic performance, and self-reflection. In a time where more and more funding is being cut from school art programs, EOBA’s art programming has become even more critical for the wellbeing of our youth. Students are trained in visual art forms (including digital art) and have many opportunities to have their art treated professionally and exposed to the community at large. Recently students were a part of an art gallery showcase, with their artwork displayed next to professional artists in the community as part of a fundraiser for EOBA. Students were also involved as artists in the creation of the Halloween Haunted House, with student work providing the bulk of the set design, costumes, and decorations. Art is deeply valued as part of EOBA’s programming and is as central to who we are as our physical and academic programs.
Creativity is a requirement of 21st-century living, despite the devaluing of art in many education settings. By keeping art as a key program at EOBA, we provide an avenue for students to develop and enhance creative and critical thinking skills. We also encourage youth to develop art practices that can be taken anywhere as an outlet for self-expression and stress relief. We don’t expect every young person participating in our Art program to become a professional artist but the skills imparted through art will extend to parts of their lives beyond the painting or sculpture.
Correlation to Wellness
Spiritual wellness is understood not only as connection to a faith, but also as a deep connection to one’s self and the world around you. Art provides opportunities for turning inward in a way that illuminates aspects of the spirit previously undiscovered, thus advancing spiritual wellness. In creating art, students are often vulnerable and learn to support others in taking creative risks and feeling safe.