Art is an integral part of our creative curriculum. Children generally love to participate in some form of art. They love the process of applying paint to paper using large varieties of painting tools, gluing tactile materials to paper and molding and rolling playdoh.
Working with art materials offers children opportunities with color, shape, design and texture. As they engage in art activities children develop an awareness of pleasant tactile experiences which benefits their socio-emotional development.
Using art materials such as paint, markers, crayons, collage materials and playdoh, children express their individual ideas and feelings. Children have the chance to use their imagination and experiment with the materials without teacher interference. This is an important time in children’s lives to encourage curiosity, foster aesthetic sensitivity, develop spontaneous imaginative thinking, and support the learning of skills that will facilitate the interaction of the child with his environment.
Art activities should be open-ended. Coloring books, dittos, pre-cut models and patterns can inhibit creativity in the classroom. In fact these materials leave little room for imagination, experimentation, individuality or discovery. There are many other more developmentally appropriate ways for children to develop their skills in art for instance, by cutting out their own designs and gluing the pieces on paper. Instead of coloring books and dittos, children create their own pictures on paper. Children experience pride, assert individuality and more. Art materials should be always freely available in the classroom for the preschool child especially paper and crayons.
It is extremely important that we facilitate our children with the proper art materials in order for our children to be emotionally secure, creative, imaginative and competent.