Noah is almost four and he loves to draw and ‘write’ and ‘make stuff’.
To make drawing and writing and making stuff easier for him and me, we have set him with a drawing basket.
Noah’s drawing basket is nothing fancy, just an old metal file basket that is a bit battered and bent, but it fits a selection of drawing and writing tools and papers and fits nicely on a shelf in the study so he can easily get it out and put it away whenever he wants to.
Because Noah’s drawing basket is easily portable it can go anywhere. It can join Noah on the floor to make signs for his block buildings, it can go outside to draw in the sunshine, it squish in on the desk next to me while I am working, or spread out on the dining table to share with his siblings.
And because Noah’s basket is available for him to use anywhere, any time, it encourages lots of drawing, creating, fine motor development and pre-writing practice and it is easy for me to include these elements in any activity any time, we just grab the basket and go.
To set up a drawing basket all you need is a basket, box or container big enough to fit some scrap paper and some drawing tools into. Choose something that is easy for your child to manage and that you can store somewhere handy, then all you have to do is fill it!
What you put in your drawing basket will depend on the age of your child. For younger kids start simple with blank paper and some chunky crayons, bigger kids will love finding new and interesting papers and drawing tools in their baskets.
Here’s some ideas for what to put in a drawing basket:
- recycled printer paper that is blank on one side.
- oil pastels
- a soft triangular grey lead writing pencil
- blank cards or paper or cardboard folded into cards.
- old diary or calendar pages.
- lined paper – make sure the lines are nice and wide apart.
- Drawing prompts – like our robots or road trip drawing prompts
- coloured paper.
- Copies of photographs – here is a free printable set of photos to get you started.
- dry erase pages – our free printable people play dough mats are great with white board markers too.
- Postcards, or find free printable blank postcards here.
- Letter writing sets – we have two free printable sets for kids birdies and monsters.
- tracing paper.
- graph paper – or find various shaped grids to print here.
- printed maps
- a journal.
- a name card.
- black paper and white pencils, crayons or chalk.
- a ruler
- a compass, or other geometry tools to explore
- scissors and a container to put the scraps in.
- a glue stick