Although attempts have been made to justify fine arts education in elementary schools on the basis of various educational and social benefits, the greatest benefit may lie in arts participation's impact on the child's emotional intelligence. A review of published literature related to emotional learning, emotional intelligence, and the benefits of fine arts participation in the elementary school is presented. The resulting synthesis serves as a theoretical framework for the view that emotional learning and expression should be integral components of a child's education and that participation in the arts provides a viable means to that end. A study was conducted to investigate the relationship between fine arts education participation (in the Art Works for Kids Program) and the emotional intelligence of 506 fifth-grade elementary students attending schools in 4 school districts in Utah. Findings indicate that participants of the arts program scored significantly higher on tests of emotional intelligence than non-participants and that students in the dance and music emphasis groups outperformed those in the drama, visual art, theatre/drama, and control groups.
College and Department
David O. McKay School of Education; Instructional Psychology and Technology
BYU ScholarsArchive Citation
Clark, Susan Jean, "The Relationship between Fine Arts Participation and the Emotional Intelligence of Fifth-Grade Elementary Students" (2006). Theses and Dissertations. 511.
emotional intelligence, arts education, elementary school