By: Angy Talbot, ECFE Blog Writer
Art is more than something exquisite or interesting; art can be an expression of someone’s soul. Art can tell a story, make you feel, and keep you guessing. There are many ways an artist can express themselves through painting, sculpture, drawing, collage, and art can be produced from any media imaginable. There are many types of art and numerous ways that one could present an art piece. When you paint a picture, you need to decide the type of paint you will use, the type of material you will be painting on, and the images you would like to paint. There are many different elements that one can express through their art. Many people, who do not consider themselves artists, would even be surprised at what they are capable of producing. It is about the experimentation and enjoyment of the process while making something with your own hands.
Children enjoy participating in art activities. Children can express what they may not be able to say in words sometimes through the use of a painting or drawing. Art gives children the ability and the chance for them to produce their own creations. Art is different than crafts. “Art is open-ended with no specific end-product in mind; children are allowed to use materials in any way they choose” (NAEYC). In the Discovery Classrooms, children are given the opportunity to use art materials how they wish from watercolors, paints, crayons, glue, scissors, play-dough, stamps, collage, clay, constructing, just to name a few items used. The child doesn’t copy what the adult has made, but creates what they desire. The process that a child goes through in creating art is more important than the end artifact. By giving children many different ways to express themselves, this will help unlock their hidden talents or help the little artist to explore. Children need to be given the opportunity to discover through various art materials. Art is not about all children making one particular project. Art is about self-expression, creativity, imagination, critical thinking, and problem solving. Art is a beautiful way to express ideas, thoughts, and feelings.
As stated from, The Creative Curriculum for Preschool in the chapter titled, Art–Letter To Families:
Art is an important part of our curriculum. Every day, children find a variety of art materials available on our shelves. Drawing, painting, pasting, molding, and constructing are not only enjoyable but also provide important opportunities for learning. Children express their ideas and feelings, improve their coordination, learn to recognize colors and textures, and develop creativity and pride in their accomplishments by exploring and using art materials.
When children are engaged in art activities, we talk with them about what they are doing and ask questions that encourage them to think about their ideas and express feelings.
We are just as interested in the creative process as we are in what children make.
What are some ways you incorporate art with your child?
Here are some other resources on art:
The Creative Arts Curriculum
Art vs. Crafts
Preschool Process And Product Art Defined