Positive Parenting: Less TV, More Creative Time
The easiest way to get your kids onboard with creative projects is to make it a whole-family project. Children crave the time they spend with their parents, siblings and even extended family members. Here are some ideas for some art activities that the whole family will enjoy:
- Creative Thinking. Try this for a fun warm-up: Each person draws a simple line or shape in the middle of their own piece of paper. Pass the paper to the right. Now make your new line or shape into any kind of animal or insect and share your creations.
- 3-D Innovation. If you haven't worked with polymer clay, you're in for a treat. Sculpey clay is a good choice. Give each person multiple pieces of clay in assorted colors. Roll or flatten a piece of clay into a pancake size about 3 inches in diameter. Cut it into a square or rectangle with a plastic knife. Add some other cut pieces of clay on top of your shape. Follow package directions for baking. Attach a jewelry pin on the back and voilà! You have a beautiful art pin.
- Artist Trading Cards. Gather any scraps and stray art materials you have at hand, such as acrylic paint, markers, pens, pencils, oil paint, poster paints, cancelled stamps, stickers, and photos clipped from magazines. Give each family member an index card or an old playing card for a base. Using whatever materials you have on hand, collage, color, cut and decorate your index card to reveal your own creative style. Anything goes! Make several cards and try collaborating with a family member on at least one card. Each one is a miniature work of art. Collect and trade them. Search the Web for "Artist Trading Cards" to find out more about this popular trend.
- Cool Tools. Kids and adults alike will love working with these two materials: square-shaped black construction paper and silver Sharpie pens. The remarkable contrast of the cool silver metallic ink against the dark black surface makes any drawing stand out. Have each family member draw the face of a different animal—made up or real!
These ideas can get you started, and you'll probably come up with lots more once the family finds the creative activities they enjoy most. Schedule a weekly family art night to ensure some uninterrupted creative time together that everyone can look forward to.