What to draw today?

What to draw today?

February 3, 2015 - 9:00 am

Some ideas to entice your child into great creativity

Encourage your child to draw anything and everything. I have some strategies to get you going if drawing isn’t on the top of your child’s preferred activity list.

First of all: making drawing fun and unique is the best motivator. Pencil and paper are fine – or crayon and coloring book – but a carrot dipped in ketchup to draw on your dinner plate might be more enticing (after the meal is done of course!).
You could use a drawing app on your smart phone at the very least. However, as an occupational therapist I always suggest using a tool to make your "mark".  Using a tool like a pencil or even a carrot involves and integrates other fine and gross motor, cognitive and visual skills.

Chalk on construction paper is one of my favourites, because it creates resistance that makes muscles work harder. Rolling a ball dipped in paint instead of a paint brush can create interesting lines and dots. A finger through chocolate pudding is a long-standing favourite too. Or if your child doesn’t like a mess, fill a clear, plastic, sealable bag with something colourful and somewhat thick. You can then push along with your finger to draw... count how many seconds the drawing lasts until it disappears forever to be drawn anew.

For young children – or for an easier starting point – think of drawing the simple lines of roads for toy cars to drive along, tracks for trains to travel, ladders for toy figurines to climb up into the castle or a fence to keep in the farm animals.

Lines are the first pre-printing skill to be mastered, followed by circles. You can add circles to lines to create lollipops, balloons, a simple flower, the sun and spiders. Circle combinations and curves can make rainbows, lady bugs, caterpillars or a snowman.

Advanced line combinations can create a flag, a wagon or a building with windows.

Even more advanced diagonals can be used to create an ice cream cone, a house, a kite.
Think about combining your child’s 2D drawings with their “3D” toys. Draw out a scene in 2 dimensions and use other toys to create a story about it. Make not only a vertical surface for the car to drive on but the scenery along the way and the destination of the road trip too!

Your child can can sit to draw but he or she can also lie on the floor or stand at an easel.

Remember that everyone has a working hand and a helping hand. Drawing is a two-handed activity much of the time too!

Fine motor skills are enhanced with each drawing undertaken. As with drawing, printing and writing rely on fine motor skills. To help your child progress with fun activities that build fine motor skills and dramatically improve printing, writing and drawing skills you'll love this resource.

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