Change 'shows importance of arts'

SCHOOL children will study arts as early as Grade One under plans for a new national arts curriculum released on Monday.

The new arts curriculum was part of wider Federal Government changes to Australian education under the national curriculum.

Education Minister Peter Garrett said the change would show the importance the Gillard Government placed on the arts.

"The curriculum is divided into the five arts subjects of drama, dance, music, the visual arts, and media arts. It sets out how students from the first year of school to Year 10 will study these subjects, what they can learn and the achievement standards they will need to meet," he said.

"Each subject is developed to be appropriate for different age groups, so for example, kindergarten students will learn about dance movements by playing games.

"Students will also use the arts to learn about local, regional and global cultures, history and traditions. There is also a strong focus on indigenous art forms in the new curriculum."

Mr Garrett said the parents, teachers and the wider community now had a chance to comment on the national arts curriculum, which was likely to take effect from 2013.