For those that don’t know, we try to pick something to sketch on Tuesdays. We have been doing it since early September of last year after I read about it on Harmony Art Mom’s blog. I usually ask the kids about what they draw and have them tell me a story. Sometimes I write down what they say or let them write it down. Then we date and sign the sketch and put it in our binder (we’ve never sent anything in to to Harmony Art Mom). I noticed some cool things as we sketched this week:
1. I don’t have to think of a topic anymore. The kids come up with them on their own. This week I tried to get a sketch going about the “cow with a golden splinter” that we have been talking about (splinters are on our minds as three of us somehow got splinters in our feet through our socks from our wooden floors this week) but Molly wanted to do an alien instead.
2. Drawing has become a habit. I don’t have to ask the kids anymore and we don’t have to do it on Tuesdays anymore unless we feel like it. I think most kids love to draw (I am not sure why adults don’t, is it because we don’t leave all the fun tools out?) and if you give them the opportunity, they will take it. So here is a tip I have to share: even if it makes things a bit messy in the house, leave paper and writing implements out for the kids to access whenever they want. Since I started doing that, we sketch and doodle at least 3 times per week and some weeks every day.
3. Many times I don’t ask Joseph to participate. He just wants to be like his older sister. So, like this week, he ignored us at first. Then, when he saw Molly having fun drawing and talking to me, he joined in. Check out his work. Kids really do copy and learn what they see (Molly asked me to add, “just like monkeys, because, in case you don’t get the joke, Joseph is a monkey”).
4. Molly is becoming a more discerning artist. Notice the papers in middle. Those were early attempts to draw the alien and to perfect his feet. She used to just slap something down. Now she really wants it to look a certain way and will take time to make it so. Those feet really frustrated her but she stuck with it. It made me happy to hear her deep throaty laugh when she tickled herself by finally getting the pen to do what she wanted!
5. I have noticed that sketching has helped the kids tells stories, remember memories, and talk about things that are difficult for them (Joseph especially likes to draw mad or sad monsters when, well, he is mad or sad). It has been an excellent tool for talking about how we are feeling.
Participating in Art is good for you. Sketch Tuesday is an easy and inexpensive way for us to be creative. A big thank you to Harmony Art Mom for giving me the idea of sketch Tuesday and a really great explanation of why teaching art is important, as well.