Art is an excellent way for you to nourish your children’s creative side. Someone’s artistic curiosity can start as soon as they learn how to use a crayon. Once that picks off, it is in your child’s best interest that you help them take it to full gear. You can do so with the right kids art supplies.
Where to Start
With so many kids’ art supplies to choose from, where can you start? You can start with what initially took your child’s interest. It can be as simple as crayons and paper, or as messy as paint and canvas. The aim is to stimulate their curiosity so they can explore what they like. They may be into dry art like pencils, crayons, and chalk at first, but they may eventually move on to the wet kinds like watercolour and paint. Whatever they may be into, it is in the best interest of their development to give them access to their craft.
Why Art Matters for Kids
To many adults who do corporate jobs, art may appear as just fun and games. Sure, some may sketch or paint on the weekends for leisure, but it may not have a significant role in your psychology. You can probably replace that paintbrush and canvas with something that is also relaxing like journaling or knitting.
For kids, however, the story is different. Children’s minds continue to develop as they age. Those brain cells continuously rewire themselves throughout the crucial development stages of human life. Art can help form that neural network. Here’s why art matter for kids:
A literature review by the National Endowment for the Arts found good associations between artistic activities and emotional skills. For example, children who drew a house after thinking of an upsetting experience were better able to improve their mood after drawing. Those who drew the negative experience itself or copied another drawing struggled with calming themselves.
Many studies looked into the influence of art on social skills of children. Some investigated the effects of an art education program that consisted of the visual arts, like painting and drawing, as well as performing arts. These studies found a positive association between the art education program and all domains of social skills, such as communication, decision-making, confidence, open-mindedness, and more.
All that creativity needs action to come alive. Art can serve as a medium for children to practice their fine motor skills. From holding a pencil to colouring within the lines to the gentle strokes of a paintbrush, these actions help train a child to perform complicated and precise movements. Such skills are important in the fields of science, engineering, and medicine.
Art and Science Complement
Some of the greatest scientists in history were also artists. You are probably thinking of old-timers like Archimedes or Leonardo de Vinci, but there are also plenty of artists-scientists in recent history. The father of neuroscience, Dr Santiago Ramón y Cajal, was passionate about drawing. The first person who successfully performed a human kidney transplant on identical twins and Nobel Prize awardee, Joseph Murray, painted. The editor-in-chief of the Journal of Investigative Surgery, Luis H. Toledo-Pereyra, even wrote that art is as vital to the surgical profession as science itself.
Art and science are not mutually exclusive. Your children’s doodles and paint splatters may not directly help them win a Nobel Prize, but these innocent and creative outlets still serve a purpose in the science aspect of life.
What Children’s Art Can Reveal
By now, you must be thinking, “Great! So what kids’ art supplies can I get to help my kids be a surgeon?” Art can do more than helping a child develop. It can also reveal what is going on in their head. Sometimes, they may not have the words to say how they feel, so they rather put it on paper. For example, if your children enjoy drawing you and your family with happy faces or kids and animals playing, then it is safe to say that your children’s mind is in a good state. If those drawings become darker, both in colour and in theme, then he/she needs a heart-to-heart talk. You can further encourage this non-verbal communication giving the appropriate kids’ art supplies, like sketch pads, a canvas, coloured pencils, etc.
Whatever may be the development stage, giving access to kids’ art supplies can be beneficial. Not only will you nourish their curiosity and creativity, but you can also help yourselves know each other more.