Teach and Learn Carnival – Why Art is Important for Little People.

June 13, 2010

I have a thing about art and little kids…. I think they should do lots of it.

Even though I often don’t want to face a potential mess, or I can’t really be bothered getting out the supplies, or I just don’t feel like supervising my small people when they create…. despite all those things I still think art is important and worth the effort.

Why is art, and being creative important?

Because children are active learners.
That means they learn best by doing.
Creating, whether it be painting, drawing, dancing or whatever is all about doing.

Art doesn’t teach one isolated skill set, it allows children to practices, integrate and explore a variety of skills and concepts. Art is all about pre-reading and pre-writing skills, all about fine motor control and large muscle movement. When we create we practice and refine all kinds of maths, science and problem solving skills. We experiment, sort out spatial awareness and use both sides of our brain. Art doesn’t discriminate, it allows us to be who we are and express how we feel. It encourages creative thinking, innovation, social skills, positive self esteem and it’s fun.

It doesn’t have to be a fancy art project, it doesn’t even have to be super messy…. just get out some crayons and some paper and draw.

Here are some other art ideas for small people (and bigger ones too)…
Autumn Crowns
Paint Big
Blow Painting
Bubble Painting
Drawing with a toddler.
Drawing with Pastels
Printing with Household objects
Big Drawing
Cotton Bud Painting, Collage and Foil Collage
Learning to Cut with Scissors
What’s in our every day art cupboard.
More Drawing


Visit Science@home to find out more about the Teach/Learn Blogging Carnival. Teach/Learn

Please take the time to visit the other participants and check out their posts on “Art.”

  • CatWay at Adventures With Kids is getting the most out of a trip to the art gallery with ideas of how to prepare children and interest them while they are there.
  • Mamapoekie from Authentic Parenting argues for the importance of art and why we should be encouraging it as our children get older.
  • Miss Carly from Early Childhood Resources talks about how to create an environment that encourages young children to explore art.
  • Sharon at Hear Mum Roar has done a fantastic video post by getting her children to do an activity two different ways and letting you see the very different results.
  • Amanda at HomeAge has been admiring art with her daughter since she was a baby, taking her to several art exhibitions and reading books.
  • Kate from Picklebums talks about why art is important for little people and has a huge list of activities you can try.
  • The Planning Queen from Planning With Kids has tips for visiting the art gallery with kids, including links to different galleries and some ideas for activities afterwards.
  • Colin Wee at Super Parents is thinking about his son’s musicality as he learns to play the violin.
  • Deb from Science@home has her children investigating materials while making sculptures and bravely let the 2 year old use a hot glue gun.
  • Leechbabe from Stuff with Thing started out looking at patterns in nature, but the activity changed because she followed her children’s lead.
  • Monique at Your Cheeky Monkey has used an indoor activity, giving her children magazines to cut out and create collages.

Thanks for visiting, we hope you enjoy some of the posts in our carnival.

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amandab June 13, 2010 at 9:21 pm

I don’t think a day goes by here when something doesn’t happen that is creative. We currently have a sand art picture on the table that Princess has been working on for the last couple of days. We’ve also gone high tech with a battery operated spirograph which is most fun when you try and see how many textas you can put in it and still get it to work LOL.

And as for mess, I think the floor still has bits of play dough here, there and everywhere! But it’s all fun, and I wouldn’t have it any ther way! :D

Marita June 13, 2010 at 9:24 pm

It is so vital. Our drawing supplies are always readily accessible to the girls. Although I have removed all our ‘wet’* art supplies from reach.

*glue, paint, ink

PlanningQueen June 13, 2010 at 10:11 pm

A great list of ideas Kate – perfect timing with school holidays just around the corner!

Hear Mum Roar June 13, 2010 at 11:11 pm

I fully agree with everything you’ve said.

Catherine June 14, 2010 at 7:05 am

Well said. Thanks for the list of projects. Perfect timing because I’m about to up the mess factor here during the school holidays.

Miss Carly June 14, 2010 at 8:31 am

For the little one I nanny {he is nine months}, I asked the mum for some paper and crayons. Of course the first thing he did was attempt to put them in his mouth {which is fine, they are non-toxic for a reason! I of course still attempted to stop that though!} but after a couple of times showing bubba that you can make colours on the paper etc he was intrigued and tried several times to draw, though he was holding just a little too far down to make too many markings.

I must say though, I am a huge fan of messy. But completely agree, art doesn’t mean messy.

Monique June 14, 2010 at 9:04 am

So agree with you :) Some great ideas here too thank you!

Lulu June 14, 2010 at 2:49 pm

I totally agree. I can`t wait to do art projects with Noah as he gets a bit older…

We did one or two art projects each day at the preschool I worked out- plus they could choose to do free art play in the mornings which was usually painting, playdough or drawing/coloring.

The internet is great for ideas!!! So many people sharing their experiences and projects.

Mistress B June 15, 2010 at 10:21 am

Can be as simple as finger painting in shaving cream on a plastic mat on the back lawn. Or bath crayons in the bathtub.

Walter June 15, 2010 at 12:21 pm

I agree with you on this. If you would visit our house you’ll find a lot of art on the wall. My small one’s are very active in expressing their ideas through crayolas and white wall. :-)

Colin Wee June 15, 2010 at 2:41 pm

How did I miss this post?

Yes, Art is important for little kids. My daughter loves her time alone with her art and craft. And I love getting all her ‘gifts’.

Now where should I store them? :-)


Christie June 15, 2010 at 10:11 pm

Hear, hear! :)

Deb June 18, 2010 at 6:56 pm

Thanks for the list of activities, we’ll be working our way through some. I love your point about integration, that you aren’t practicing a single skill.

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