The Arts are powerful forms of personal and social expression.
They link imagination, thinking and feeling. They provide essential learning for living and develop a wide range of both general and specific skills, which are significant in many aspects of life, including employment. They are important for recreation and leisure.
The Arts cross boundaries. They are a source of international communication and understanding. They express and shape national identity. Learning through the Arts enables students to appreciate and understand their own heritage and other cultures. It provides opportunities to examine a range of values and perceptions.
The Arts are important to the growth of self-knowledge and self-worth. They encourage students to investigate their own values and those of others, and to recognise the aesthetic and spiritual dimensions of their lives. They enable students, as individuals and as members of a group, to understand, express and communicate present and past experiences.
(The New Zealand Curriculum Framework, 1993, page 15)