Today we did a drawing activity . The goal of the project was process not product. We are trying to ease the children into being more intentional at the easel versus the ” Lets see how many cups we can fill with paint ” method. We want to encourage creativity but struggle with drawing the line between creativity and wasting materials . We talk drops of glue not puddles. We talk having a plan when you approach the easel. Like everything else we will work our way through it and come out smelling like a rose. I know there have been many large paintings going home lately. Here’s a little information about preschoolers and art.
Best Ways for Young Children to Learn about Art Non-representational projects — No young child should be expected to make art that ‘looks like’ something. They don’t have the fine motor dexterity to accomplish representational art and shouldn’t be expected to.
Open ended activities — There should not be a ‘correct’ way to create an art project. Like snowflakes, no two art projects should look exactly alike!
Physical experiences — Children will learn best about colors if they can mix them themselves, even if what they have created in the end looks like a ‘brown blob’. Live and learn!
Great materials — Skilled teachers of art for young children select engaging materials that can be used in unique ways.
Non-directive approach — Children should not be told what to make or how to make it. This will truncate their openness to possibility.
It’s ok to get messy — Your child should not be worried about getting ‘dirty’ from art materials, this will increase their self-consciousness and limit their creativity. Keep some old clothes dedicated to art making.
Respect your child’s art — We have a rule that grown-ups are not allowed to change or add to the child’s artistic decisions. If an adult is having a hard time with this, we offer them their own piece of paper! Display your child’s art at home!
Art is created in the process of solving problems — An amazing artist and teacher once said this to me. Creating art is not an easy process, in some ways it is an existential struggle, but ultimately it is a rewarding one.