Improve Well-Being Through The Arts

When we visit a gallery—often roaming and reflecting in silence—or watching a performance on stage, we can become consumed by thoughts and feelings, which have the power to transport us to realms outside ourselves.

When a teenager engages with artistic endeavours, those moments can have a profound impact on their mind for the better. Art enriches our life experiences and adds colour, sound and meaning in order to understand new contexts and perspectives. Being able to explore the Arts as a student is an invaluable and meditative tool as they search for their own beliefs, truths and self-worth in this increasingly digital world.

Creating works of art—be it dance, drawing, photography or music—can act as a portal to self-confidence and independent discovery. Not only can the Arts achieve a chemical release of endorphins to stimulate positive mood and engagement, but it can allow students to see and interpret their world in a completely new light. They can witness all those who have come before them and translated their own journeys through means of artistic expression. Our students have the vessel to illustrate their own journey by immersing in all that our School has to offer–whether that is on the stage, screen, in a symphony orchestra or sculpting an artwork.

The beauty of the Arts is that students are less concerned by the idea that there should be a right or wrong—pass or fail process—but are supported by their educators to immerse themselves in an experience that invites exploration and artistic licence. We find that our students achieve personal and academic growth best when they feel encouraged to explore avenues less travelled. The Arts program here at Toorak College is designed around this individualistic process of self-exploration and discovery.

Our teachers nurture students with support and guidance to develop a positive growth mindset, allowing for creative and critical thinking to occur. Here at Toorak, there is no shortage of self-expression and artistic engagement as student artwork captures the eyes of those who pass by the foyers and hallways, and the sounds of student musicians delight the ears of all who step foot near the performance spaces.

Wellbeing is a complex and topical subject that is forever changing and growing in all directions. There is no single answer or easy solution to enhancing student health and wellbeing. However, we know that the Arts allows our young people to dance, sing, play music or paint, offering the chance to disengage from the noisy and saturated content-driven world, and to just be present in the moment.

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