Joy is a wonderful feeling, one that strikes as lightning with laughter, happiness. A child smiling at you, a tiny hand grasping your finger or a simple sneeze coming from an infant is extraordinary, nothing else but pure joy.
In these moments, in these extraordinary experiences, one parent could get lost in the moment day and day out in happiness thus overlooking opportunities in which a little attention could lead to great growth, to the nourishing of one`s imagination, towards the moments in which things click for the child as he makes connections, associations, bonds that will last for a lifetime.
Doodling is such an opportunity, doodling can lead to drawing and coloring, even painting and numerous studies have previously highlighted the great importance of drawing and coloring in a child’s development as these artistic means of expression can emphasize physical, social, cognitive development of the little one as well as encouraging social interaction. Timeless memories for all parties will be forged, extraordinary experiences will grow roots, take a moment and find in the following rows how extraordinary significant these actions are for a child.
18 months would have passed till our reality raises the interest of the little one with an action entitled “scribbling”. A simple process, a simple action through which the child starts moving a pencil around, forming shapes, leaving colors behind, materializing abstract pieces of art that will remain a mystery for us.
Scribbling is utterly important for two reasons, the action is the first contact with art on one hand and on the other it is a very important association between hand and mind. The child attempts to construct something in the process thus moving his wrist, arm, fingers, all driven by mind, this fine tunes his coordination, his self trust and its psychical development alike. Encourage every initiative and make sure you`re there, drawing by his side.
Two-three years will offer a child sufficient time to recognize shapes, squares and triangles with ease. This is the moment in which the child takes a grasp over basic terms in our reality and attempts to use these in simple compositions. These incipient shapes are what Kellog entitled “aggregates” and they represent the foundation of creative drawing, mainly constructed with primitive shapes.
This first, pure initiative to draw something real, anchored in reality starts to create deep connections with the environment, surroundings, associations that represent immense jumps in emotional and intellectual growth for the child as every new drawing can contain new terms, new items that he stores, learns.
At the age of three, four, the toddler starts representing pieces of our reality in simple drawings. This realized with a skill entitled conceptualization, a simple process that associates the item with aggregates, identifying common items and translating these in simple compositions made out of lines, circles, triangles. One of the most common conceptualization that the child draws is the family portrait, the whole family lined up constructed with lines and circles that will soon become a fridge heirloom!
Repetition will help the child create these associations faster and the ability to conceptualize learnt at a young age can have a great impact on grasping the right handle on reality.
A child of 8 years old is in the search of a different mean of expression, he attempts to represent reality in a realistic manner, this step being known as the “concrete operational thought “. At this stage imagination is stalled, for a moment of perspective, literally. The child’s imagination now takes into account perspective, proportions, textures and materials in his artistic expression.
This step is extraordinarily difficult for the child as the transition is not coming easy for each individual. This pursuit must be encouraged and while great attention will go into detailing, line weight, textures and shading not all drawings will lead to realistic drawings. Regardless of results in this moments, the confidence of a child is utterly important, this is a key moment in which the autonomy and independence of the child can climb a great step or take a huge hit and the parent ought to encourage this endeavor.
In an artistic endeavor there simply is no losing side, every moment counts, every movement can be translated into growth, development and timeless experiences. The extraordinary is just around the corner and in the followings rows a few tips and tricks lie, meant to prepare you for this incredible journey.
- No critique, no judgment, regardless of circumstances. Anything at all can discourage the young mind. Creativity and one’s imagination simply cannot be questioned.
- Encourage every step along the way. All scenarios need a push in terms of confidence, pure minds can only be nourished, encouraged to grow.
- Prepare for the unknown. Children get creative in the most unexpected circumstances and you ought to be prepared. Keep pencils and a piece of paper at your grasp all the time and encourage this marathon.
What do you think? We would love to hear your drawing experiences; we would love to see the drawings completed with your toddler!
Photo Courtesy to Homesthetics.net