Through arts education, students develop aesthetic awareness and judgment by using and creating forms of expression that communicate ideas, perceptions, and feelings. Arts activities enable students to learn and express themselves in ways not possible in other subjects.
The arts are universal and central to every world culture. Artistic expression is an integral part of all societies, not a stand-alone, independent enterprise. Through the arts, people tell their stories, thereby creating the collective story of humankind. Dance, drama, music, and visual arts, along with literature and other forms of expression, allow a culture to define its identity and communicate that to others.
(p. 2 Foundation for the Atlantic Canada Arts Education Curriculum)