Helping Children Discover Art

Art is something which enriches our culture and allows us to experience the world and different cultures within it. It is important, therefore, to teach our children about the importance of art for our culture and our world. It is never too early to get children excited about the world of art, for teaching those to have an appreciation for the arts at an early age will help them to stay in tune with their creative side throughout their entire lives. Children often have short attention spans, however, and it is important to present art to them in a way that they can appreciate and not feel overwhelmed by.

One should start by picking artworks which are related to interests that the child has already expressed interest in. By presenting only a few works of art which relate to the interest, the young child can learn that others in the world have an interest in the same topic. It is also important to pay attention to and validate the reactions that the child has to the work of art, as this encourages them to think about the artwork and explore the ideas presented by the work of art more.

The supervisors of the child need to maintain a healthy balance between leading and following however. Knowing when to push a child into exploration is a good thing, but pushing the child too much will make that child feel as if the art becomes a chore. Furthermore, it is a good idea to present something physical for the child to touch that reinforces the work of art being viewed. Touch is one of the strongest sensations of curiosity in a child and being able to touch something to get the same feeling that the artwork is presenting is an important notion to a child.

Photo: Courtesy of New Eyes

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