Why the Arts Are Integral to Aging Services
Promoting Arts for Older Adults at McGregor
Every fall at McGregor, we host an arts show for our residents. This arts show gives seniors the opportunity to express themselves creatively—something they may not have been able to do for many years. Some of our residents are pursuing an interest in an art form, such as painting or photography, that they were unable to try earlier in life due to a lack of access and resources.
We believe the creative arts are integral for our seniors for several key reasons.
Creating expressive art is empowering.
Any form of art—whether it is dance, singing, theater, or visual art—can provide an emotional release. It empowers the creator to express themselves and connect with others on a different level.
Art can connect us with our peers.
The annual arts display at McGregor provides residents with an opportunity to socialize, engage, and connect with one another in discussion about the arts. This is a great chance for our residents to meet one another and share their work.
Participating in the arts stimulates our brain.
Lisa Onken, Ph.D., of the National Institute on Aging, found that participating in arts activities “may be linked to improving cognitive function and memory and improving self–esteem and well–being.”
If you would like to expand promotion of the arts at your senior living community, consider the many different ways you can do so:
- Create a seasonal art gallery or display featuring residents’ work.
- Form a singing group or choir that holds practices and performances.
- Host a ballroom dancing class.
- Create a small theater space to stage plays or poetry readings.
- Hold a writing workshop.
- Create a communal “art studio” space stocked with supplies like drawing pads, canvases, paint, brushes, and colored pencils.
How are you incorporating the arts at your senior living community? We would love to hear from you. Please reach out if you have any questions or would like more information about our programming and services for older adults.