Children’s Art Development

There are many sequences children go through during the development of their art.  You can look at young children’s art development in the form of a continuum.  Although there are many stages along the continuum, not all children will follow through these stages in the same order.  Some may hop back and forth, others may miss a few.  The order of these stages is not important, but you will most often find that your child will follow some sequence.

A picture you might see your child draw that may be a scribble through adult eyes, is actually the first attempt at art.  A child has found a substance that leaves marks, and this for them is extremely fascinating.

Through practice they will master the grip and control over their marking objects and from here onwards all sorts of exciting things begin to happen.

Children soon become aware that trough their art they are able to express themselves in a new and exciting way.  All stages of children’s art development are important and we need to encourage and support children through every stage in order for them to continue to develop their skills further.

Children may ask you to draw things for them and persuade you that they cannot do it themselves, but persist in encouraging them that they can.  Help them by talking to them about what it is they are interested in drawing. For example the child says “I can’t draw a house, I don’t know how”.  The adult can help by encouraging their child by saying “What does a house look like?”, “Does it have windows?”, “How many?”, “How do you get in and out of your house?” or “What shape is your house going to be?”.  Although it seems harmless drawing for children, they will often see what you have drawn to be the only way something can and should look.  If they were to try again they would compare their attempt, often not being satisfied.  Children have such wonderful imagination’s, lets foster this.

Through all these stages, children are gaining all the appropriate skills they need for when their written literacy begins to form.  In order for children to be able to write they need to have gained control of different art media, developed strength and dexterity in their fingers and hands.

Through the exploration and experimentation that they experience in their early years they are mastering this.  When you look at the art continuum you can see how children’s art plays such a major role in written literacy and mathematics.

How? This is when vertical, horizontal and lateral lines are joined together in a certain way or added to by an oval or circular shape, they learn letters and numbers.  This later forms words and so it goes on.  Children’s art development is so important and so meaningful.



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