According to one study, drawing was found to ‘enhance memory in older adults more than other known study techniques.’ Sketching is active rather than passive, it forces us to engage fully with what we’re experiencing. As our hand struggles with the pencil, as we scrutinise the object of our sketch, as we ponder how to create an image, our brain makes numerous synaptic connections. Good for the brain, good for our memory. And good for our mental health too. Scientists are still trying to understand how making art changes our brain, but the interdisciplinary Arts and Neuroscience Networking Group, think that it ‘enhances brain function by impacting brain wave patterns, emotions, and the nervous system.’ It also lowers the amount of stress hormones swilling around us and raises our levels of feel-good serotonin. It improves our ability to focus and it helps us process emotions.
There are ten thousand reasons why art and music need to be taught in all schools.