Secret Doodling

Mar 21, 2012

Drawing is an important way for children to develop their fine motor skills, creativity, cognitive skills and language development. It is very closely related to Literacy as well as emotional development and should be part of a daily routine for children.

Here is a slightly different way that you could draw today. I set it up as an Invitation to Play.

Ages: 2 and up
Materials: Large sheet of cardboard, small squares of coloured paper, stapler, markers/textas

activities for kids, creativity, secret drawing, drawing for toddlers, drawing for preschoolers
 On a large piece of cardboard on the floor, I stapled down one side of little squares of coloured paper to create little flaps. I provided some thick textas/markers and left it at that.

 I anticipated that she would be drawn to doodle under the flaps but I was still keen to see if she'd do that or draw on top of them or around them.

Turns out that underneath them was all she was interested in. They were her "Secret drawings, shhhhh!"

Some tips:

- Instead of always giving your child directions as to how they are expected to play, I like to mix it up and create "invitations" to play where children can explore and figure out for themselves what they can do. This type of open-ended activity allows the child to take the activity to a level they are comfortable with while giving them the freedom to explore different angles.

- Extend this activity for older children to practice literacy skills such as writing and identifying letters, sight words etc. It probably won't surprise you to know that a child is more likely to want to write their words under a secret flap then just on a plain piece of lined paper. Keep mixing it up!

- Practice correct pencil grip with your child from around 3 years of age, possibly earlier depending on your child's fine motor skills. The more practice and the earlier they do it will help with their writing in the future.

- Giving children a different scale to work on or a different surface, etc, will effect their behaviour and will involve problem solving processes that they're unaware they're even using. They require concentration and identification

- Talk to your child about what they are drawing in order to develop their cognitive skills (thinking) and language development. Not to forget the important bonding that takes place between you both.

- Change the writing or drawing materials to see the differences it makes. What will they do with paint?

Happy playing,
Debs :)

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