Common Sense


10 Best Arts Tools for High School

From performing arts to visual arts, high school art students learn to be critics, designers, producers, and performers who advance their skills and refine their craft. High school is also a perfect time for arts students to explore different mediums and modes of expression while learning to communicate concepts and meaning. To inspire your students and fuel their creative drive, we've handpicked this collection of best-in-class tools that will provide project ideas and inspiration, peer communities for critique and feedback, and creative tools for everything from music to industrial design.

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Kennedy Center Education

Stellar content, practical tips for integrating arts into every subject

Bottom line: If you're willing to do some digging and prep, this is a terrific resource for integrating the arts across the curriculum.


Amazingly powerful audio workstation unleashes creativity

Bottom line: There's exceptional functionality in this solid, all-inclusive audio workstation that's fantastic for high-quality, anytime, and anywhere audio recording and sharing.

Adobe Spark

Super-flexible design tool for crafting fab images, videos, and sites

Bottom line: This one-stop shop for creating sleek graphics, web stories, and animated videos is incredibly easy to use and challenges students to think critically about visual presentation.


Immersive virtual exhibit tool is attractive and versatile but fussy

Bottom line: For teachers and students who can invest the time, Artsteps provides a compelling, free option for presenting and exploring images and audio of any kind.


Create professional-looking media with an abundant library of templates

Bottom line: It's a treasure trove of well-designed templates and features that encourage creativity and collaboration, but expect some growing pains.

Common Sense Selection

Google Arts & Culture

Well-curated art and history site inspires curious learning

Bottom line: A beautifully presented one-stop shop for compellingly curated and contextualized art, history, and culture resources, but it's lacking educator supports.

Photoshop Express Photo Editor

Top-notch photo editor helps perfect pics for creative projects

Bottom line: This is a powerful, free creation tool from the industry leader in photo editing.

Autodesk Sketchbook

Impressive creation tool for teens serious about art

Bottom line: Gives students easy access to professional tools for creating digital art.


Cool coding tool tuned to teen girls' passions aids creativity

Bottom line: Learn-to-code programs for youths often too narrowly define what can be done with code; Vidcode expands the options, helping girls see code's value in culture and express themselves.


Extremely powerful photo editor will equally delight pros, amateurs

Bottom line: It successfully walks the fine line of photo-editing features, offering satisfying experiences for those making quick edits and those crafting perfect images.

Get tips for using these tools in the classroom

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