How sketching and colouring can help with child development


“Every child is an artist.” -Picasso



A mindless doodle can hold one hundred and one oodles of inspiration. The child can flourish in their cognitive development as well as improve both their social and emotional skills.

An A4 sketch pad and a pack of pencils can allow your child to let their imagination run wild. It can create a conversation starter too as the child can explain what their picture is of. They may even demonstrate their feelings, and this aids their social skills. Sometimes, children scribble across the paper until their heart is content and this method can be used to vent their anger or frustration.



How does mathematics play a role in terms of sketching?

A toddler will understand the use of patterns when drawing and even project their idea onto paper. Mathematics requires an understanding of shapes and sequences. Therefore, this can be applied when drawing specific ideas. For example, a child may draw a robot that is made up of different sized squares, circles and even triangles. A child will understand how the shapes fit together and can create something bigger. Additionally, School curriculum's specify that children will need to learn basic shapes, which can be merged together with simple sketching practice at home!


Mathematics also involves the depth and scale of a drawing. A child may wish to draw a horse for example and their mind would need to process the concept that a horse’s head should not be bigger than the body. This is signified as an accurate representation of proportions. It can take a while for them to progress to this standard but with a heap of paper and an endless supply of pencils, it is possible. Practice makes perfect, as they say.



How does colouring aid their motor skills?

A child will understand how to colour between the lines which aid their hand-eye coordination. It will also improve their cognitive competence and hand-eye coordination too. They need to work out which colour is appropriate for the object they are shading. For example, we associate the sky with being a pale blue colour and in a picture, a child would colour the sky this particular shade.


A coloured pencil, wax crayon and even chalk all provide a unique texture. This helps children understand the difference between how a wax crayon feels in comparison to a generic pencil crayon. When a child holds one of these particular items, their motor skills are in full swing, and they can then process how to use each one. For example, a white wax crayon would not show on a sheet of paper; just like chalk would work better on a chalkboard instead of paper. Both of these instances demonstrate how a child mentally processes hand-eye coordination, as well as understanding how to gain the best experience from using colouring tools.



How does drawing and colouring help children with learning disabilities?

A child who suffers from a learning disability may use drawing and colouring to help express themselves. Especially if they choose to transfer their emotions onto paper and even verbally discuss these with you. Sometimes, those who are on the Autistic Spectrum benefit from storyboards. These can be used to illustrate how the day’s events will take place through visual representations. Also, a child may benefit from sketching and drawing as it can help to channel their thought processes. For those that struggle to express themselves verbally, drawing can truly help express their actual emotions. For example, some children may scribble across the page if they were angry. This creative activity also helps in terms of sensual stimulus, especially for those with Autism.


If you're looking for some art activities to try at home why not check out our Ducklings Artists page, which can be found by clicking here, or by typing in https://www.ducklingspreschool.co.uk/artists


So, why not pick up a sketch pad, a few pencils and sketch as a family today?


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