Take an art class to help your kids express themselves more freely
12 April 2019 FAMILY
By: Natasha Archary
Kids will be kids. They will play rough and get dirty, are loud and unfiltered. They have many moments that are picture worthy with notable pause for those little awe moments. As they develop their interpersonal skills, and figure out what they’re into and what makes them unhappy, things can get tricky.
As parents, we’re told to anticipate those dreaded teen years which will bring with it a plethora of frustrating rants for various reasons. What if I told you that the toddler phase is just as difficult to maneuver through safely? And with minimal damage to your sanity.
Where does all this energy come from?
It’s something I find myself puzzling over more often than not. Even after a pretty hectic full school day, kids have a massive reserve of energy. While you may feel ready to call it a night after dinner on a school night, your little one looks like they can go full throttle with Disney Junior for a few more hours.
And just try switching off the TV when they’re not ready. I dare you. This battle of wits is not an uncommon issue with parents and child. This is just one of those instances where parents may feel defeated by trying to get through to their children.
At a teacher conference held a few years ago, a few teachers noted how art class seemed to relax the entire group of toddlers. Children who were usually more reserved felt assertive when ‘exhibiting’ their masterpiece to the entire class.
This showed teachers how the strictly academic class environment was killing a child’s creative expression. Art is also a great way to find out what your child is feeling. Have you ever had a sketch or painting analyzed by child psychologists growing up?
If not, many movies about ‘dysfunctional’ families portray this scenario with obvious embellished depictions. Horror movies are a good example. Child sees ghosts, starts sketching some shady images, psychologist deduces, “your child is deeply troubled.”
Meg Bourne, a mom, blogger and founder of Art Feeds agrees that art can play a transformative role in a child’s development.
When she founded the organization in 2009, the therapeutic art and creative education centre was just a small class to facilitate creative and emotional expression.
Since then, Bourne has grown the organization to cater to over 36,000 kids from pre-schoolers to teens. Assisting children with behavioural problems, learning challenges and poor concentration.
Behavioural experts believe that art can help to hone in on frenzied behavior, giving children a sense of calm and easing them in stressful situations. It’s probably why so many early developmental daycares and learning facilities include art classes as a part of their day to day routine.
It goes a little broader than a painting lesson. Creative arts like theatre, dance, music etc. can be the way forward for children who may seem to have trouble expressing themselves. Find what works for your child and build on that with them.
Instead of feeling like your child’s differences are obstacles on their academic path, embrace them as strengths. Some of the highest paid artists in the world chose to focus on their hidden talents and are billionaires today. This could also be a way your child chooses their path in life.