At Dale Hall we believe every child is an artist and has the ability to express themselves through art. Too often, in my experience, children become disillusioned as they grow older and start to compare their work with others. Sometimes, by the time they reach year 3 they already have a pre conceived idea that they 'cannot draw' and therefore they are not any good at Art. But Art is SO much more than drawing and representing perfectly what we see in front of us.
Rothko, a very famous artist taught that everyone can make art—even those without innate talent or professional training. Just as children can quickly pick up stories or songs, they can easily turn their observations and imaginings into art. For Rothko, art was all about expression—transforming one’s emotions into visual experiences that everyone can understand.
And children do this naturally. “These children have ideas, often fine ones, and they express them vividly and beautifully, so that they make us feel what they feel,” he writes. “Hence their efforts are intrinsically works of art.”
We will strive to make sure all our children at Dale Hall are given the chance to express their ideas and value their efforts so they can appreciate the artist within them.
Try to get hold of as many different types of drawing and painting resources as you can to let your child get creative and explore creating art using different materials. Paints, chalk, crayons, pens, pencils, modelling clay and much more can be found in discount shops. Just don’t forget to put lots of newspaper down first!
Alternatively, instead of buying materials, let them get creative using things around the house – for example, pasta and pulses to create pictures using glue. You could even experiment with colour-changing art – find out more here.
Encourage your child to keep a sketch book. Suggest that they take it with them when they go out so that they can look for things to sketch – a tree, a building, a scene. Alternatively, if they see something they would like to draw, take a photo on your phone and let them sketch from it when they are home.
Praise your child’s creations and encourage them not to get disheartened if they feel they have made ‘mistakes’. Explain that art is about being creative and trying out different things. There is no right or wrong way to do things. You could even ‘frame’ their work using coloured paper or card and create a little gallery on the kitchen wall or in their bedroom to display their work.
Find out about local art galleries or museums that you can visit with your child. Encourage them to talk about what they see and to share their opinions – about subject matter, colours, what materials the artist used, and so on.
Every child from Year 1 to Year 6 has a sketchbook which is kept close to hand whenever we are creating, learning and developing new ideas, both in the art room and within classrooms. The sketchbook does not follow the school's presentation or marking policy; we feel very strongly that it belongs to the child. It's not just a book - it is a space where children can freely express, create, develop and learn, often with limited guidance from the teacher. The sketchbook should be at the centre of their creativity
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