Music and Art: learning area

What's this learning area about?

When you see an activity labelled with the 'Music and Art' icon on CBeebies, it means that it can help your child develop their creativity through art and music.

For young children this is all about using their imagination and expressing how they experience the world through things like painting, dancing or making a model.

How art and music help children to learn

It’s important for small children to start exploring their own ideas in different ways, using all of their senses to explore concepts like colour, texture and space.

Their creations can be inspired by anything and everything in their world, and the great thing is that there’s no right or wrong answer.

Children tend to be more creative when they’re given freedom to play and experiment, so providing them with a wide range of noise-makers or materials and letting them do their own thing (within reason) is the way to go.

Making a noise with a musical instrument or painting a picture of something they’ve seen is a great way for children to express how they’re feeling – very often they can say more about their experiences through being creative than they’re able to put into words just yet.

By keeping an eye on what they’re doing, you can begin to get a real sense of what’s important to your little one.

Doing a picture gives your child the opportunity to make their own decisions about where to put things and what to emphasise, which is very empowering.

Talking together about what they’ve created is a good way to encourage them to explain their decisions back to you – as well as showing them how much you value their artwork.

There are lots of mess-free Picture Makers on the CBeebies website that your child can use to tell their own stories based on their favourite CBeebies characters.

As well as developing imagination and encouraging self-expression, activities like art and music lay the foundation for some vital skills children will need later in their learning journey.

Discover how painting and drawing supports children’s fine motor skills (small muscle actions like gripping to pick something up), and really helps with holding a pen and writing when they’re older.

Early exposure to music, meanwhile, plays a crucial role in ‘wiring’ your child’s brain for learning. For example, songs teach them about how language is put together in preparation for reading, while keeping time to a beat introduces the idea of rhythm and pattern which helps with reasoning and problem solving. 

About CBeebies learning areas

At CBeebies, our learning areas reflect those found in the Early Years curricula of the UK; the EYFS in England and Wales, the Curriculum for Excellence in Scotland, and the Foundation Stage in Northern Ireland.

These are the guidelines that all educational settings (like nurseries, schools and child-minders) follow to help children develop knowledge, skills and understanding using a fun, play-based approach.

We reflect these learning areas so that you can be sure that what your child learns from CBeebies perfectly complements what they are taught when they get to nursery and school.

CBeebies’ learning area ‘Art and Music’ links to Expressive Arts and Design (England and Wales), Expressive Arts (Scotland) and The Arts (Northern Ireland)

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