publication date: Nov 9, 2007
author/source: Anne Coates
As soon as your baby is sitting up
holding a spoon, he’s ready
to hold a fat wax crayon
in his fist and make his first delightful squiggles.
helps to develop hand-eye
co-ordination, just as dipping
their fingers into new substances
like paint or dough encourages
them to explore texture
Age two to three
Scribbling starts to become more varied
and is beginning to move in a circular
direction as grip
and hand control
Offer a wider range of pencils, crayons, paints
and brushes as well as plastic shaped biscuit cutters
they can use with dough.
Age three to four
Children are now involved in drawing patterns
and colouring which improves hand muscle control
and establishes the correct grip
for learning to write.
structured painting activities
and printing encourage
the child to experiment
with colour. Collage
and and junk modelling
are popular and help them explore
shape and size.
Age four to five
Capable of longer periods of concentration, pre-schoolers
will be able to produce
more detailed pictures which represent
various objects and will enjoy using stencils.
him to be more adventurous
with junk modelling and to pay
attention to detail.
Stuck for materials?
- Make your own finger paints using cornflour and water mixed into a paste and coloured with food dyes.
- Playdough - use three parts flour to one part salt then add a little cooking oil and enough water to make a dough. Colour with food colouring. Keeps for ages in a plastic bag.
- Saltdough - mix equal amounts of salt and flour plus oil and water as above. Knead until soft and stretchy. Can be hardened by cooking in the bottom of a low oven but will take a few hours to harden completely. Can be painted. Will keep uncooked in a plastic bag.
- Keep empty boxes and packets for junk modelling.
- Collect scraps of fabric and wool, buttons, feathers, cotton wool for making a collage.
- For a different type of collage use lentils, chick peas and other died pulses plus dry pasta shapes and experiment with sugar, flour, cocoa and rice for different textures.
Some arts and crafts
products are clearly marked
with an age range
. However these are only guidelines
. Be guided by your child’s co-ordination
maybe he could easily use something designed
for an older
Children should always be supervised
during arts and crafts activities and you may need to be extra vigilant
when you are playing with children of different ages
- a four year old may be using something like beads
which a younger
one might put in her mouth and swallow.
You should also be prepared
for different periods of attentiveness
- as a child gets older her concentration