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Drawing with Kids

A couple people asked me about my last post, why does Susan Striker say drawing with kids harmful? What exactly does she say? I think it is mostly that pushing kids who are too young to draw recognizable objects stunts their artistic progress, which also impacts their writing and reading. I think her point is that kids really need to go through a scribbling stage, and by teaching them to draw specific patterns, like their name, that they get obsessed with the reward they get for doing this, pleasing the parent, and don't go through the necessary exploration of line and form that is 'necessary'. She says kids aren't ready to start representational drawing until 4 and a half. Personally I think she goes way overboard, saying things like, you shouldn't draw to entertain your kids, because they will copy you rather than creating their own art. But I think that's like saying, don't walk in front of your kids before their at their walking stage, it will harm their growth... She makes a parallel arguement saying you wouldn't encourage a child to walk before they were ready, but drawing with your kids isn't forcing them to draw something particular, it's just the way that you play with pens together, and gives them an adult example, like every other aspect of their lives, kids are looking to copy, they are designed to do it, but I don't think they are going to start copying something they aren't ready to do...

But I'm just paraphrasing my understanding of her points, if someone wants to borrow her book, 'Young At Art', I'll lend it to you.


( 2 comments — Leave a comment )
Aug. 7th, 2008 12:12 am (UTC)
See, this is why it's awesome that my drawing ability amounts to scribbling. I won't have to worry about my child feeling pressured to copy my realism. :D
Aug. 7th, 2008 03:37 pm (UTC)
Heh, well, presumably you do know how to print letters, so don't think you're off her hook! :-D And I bet you can draw a perfectly adequate stick figure, and basic house and lollipop tree. Part of her rant focuses around the stick figure actually, because kids start drawing people as circles with radiating lines, and put faces in the circle, and adults start asking them where the torso is, and she gets all ranty about that.
( 2 comments — Leave a comment )