"In my opinion, though, it's more important that someone learn to make music, draw, photograph, write, or create in any form, regardless of the quality, than it is for them to understand and appreciate Picasso, Warhol, or Bill Shakespeare..."
David Byrne writes the above quote in the fantastic thought piece, HOW MUSIC WORKS. Here, he talks about the need of amateurs to keep the arts vibrant, and more importantly, to bond a self healing glue for societies, with an emphasis on the disadvantaged.
At a certain point in the American industrialized education system, we abandoned the active creative arts, for art history.
The powers that be thought it more wise (and certainly less expensive) to teach an understanding of mostly Western Classical Art, than to let children create. Funding for arts programs plummeted all through the country in the last decade.
But the creative act itself is the most vital. Art history and criticism is more the perpetuation of an elitist system created to worship monuments, over intuition.
Now, don't get me wrong, I've worshipped some of those masters works myself, but I would advocate for less worship, and more encouragement to the youth, who are seeking ways to figure out problems.
One of the best vehicles human beings "created" for problem solving, is art. And the evidence is clear that problem solving skills is an extremely desirable trait in industry now. So, if you want to give a gift to a child and an advantage, a nice pat on the back and a Beat Machine can go a long way.