Your child’s first drawings
Dear parents, watching our children grow is such a rewarding experience. How exciting it is for parents to watch their children as they start to draw, or rather, scribble.
Knowing that this is their way of expressing their emotions, will help you understand right from the start what your child likes most.
So prepare yourself psychologically to see the walls of your home become an art gallery!
Each child does things in his or her own time
As we know we are all different, and each child does things in his own time. Children children are like sponges that soak up their environmental cues and experiences: and there will always be those who learn faster than others.
There is no right age to do things, because it is all about the child’s environment and the stimuli he or she receives everyday. From a very early age your child expresses his personality and the way he sees the world around him.
Remember that children draw for fun and, as from the age of three, to reduce stress, fear or anxiety, so let them use their imagination in whatever way they want.
The phases of “scribbling”
There are differentphases to the way children approach paper and colours, through which they express feelings, emotions but also conflicts and problems. Something you may not know is that between 12 and 24 months of age, a child is really not interested in colours, that only develops at a later stage.
12 months: the first signs
A child will start to be interested in drawing at about eighteen months years of age. This is an exploratory and energetic, stage, when children leave their first sign in the world. Children often scribble so hard, that they make a hole in the paper. In this stage children have an enormous amount of energy, but not the necessary motor control skills.
Parents should help their baby draw, letting him use thick felt pens, that are smooth and easy to hold.
24 months: controlled scribbles
At about 2 years of age, your child realises that there is a connection between the movements of his hand and the marks on the paper. This is the start of a more controlled drawing stage, when your child learns to draw straight lines or even circumferences. Your child will experiment new drawing techniques and methods in this stage: for example, what happens if I move my hand like this? What happens if I hold my crayon less tightly? At this age you can appreciate your child’s motor skills and temperament from the way he or she draws.
36 months: names and meaning
At about the age of 3, children start to associate names and meaning to what they draw. From now on, drawings are no longer simply a fun thing to do, but are a way of expressing feelings and emotions. For children who live in very stimulating environments, this phase may start as early as 2 and half years of age.
When your child is almost four, what he or she draws will be more recognizable such houses, trees, flowers and geometric shapes. From now on your child’s drawings will be more orderly
Rules for parents: dos and don't s
Parents should remember that is it very important to encourage their children to draw, without forcing them but simply by showing that they appreciate what he or she draws.
Appreciating what your child draws and trying to give meaning to his drawings, even if they don’t look like anything, could have a huge impact on your child’s development.
Remember that drawing is the way children use to express their emotions, so think carefully before criticising.
Your job is to make sure your child is surrounded by stimuli, that gratify him or her.