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Teaching and Doing Art With Children and Kids

Updated on July 31, 2012

Me a Teacher? You're Out Of Your Mind!

I recently began teaching art to children, and I have to say it has absolutely got to be one of the most joyful "jobs" I have ever had. Having a long background in art, and in raising kids, I suppose this was a natural thing for me to do - but months ago if you had said I would be an art teacher I would have told you were out of your mind!

Not because I don't like kids, mind you, because I do - I just never thought that I would "fit" the title of teacher. Especially teaching art.

The reason being is that because I have my own exacting ways of doing art, and I could never really imagine myself trying to teach my brand of art to children.

The Kidz Art Logo

The Kidz Art Logo is bright,cheerful and imaginative
The Kidz Art Logo is bright,cheerful and imaginative | Source

If You Dream, You Can Draw!

All that changed however when I was hired by a company called "Kidzart", which is actually a world-wide franchise. Kidzart teachers teach art in schools in after school programs to kids that want to do art. Parents sign their kids up for classes, and every week a new project is done. Primarily a drawing program, Kidzart classes teach children basic fundamentals of art from a drawing perspective using many mediums like oil pastels, watercolors, marking pens, crayons clay, chalk, copper foil just to name a few.

One of the best things however about Kidzart is the "rules". Never being one for too many rules myself - I love the Kidzart philosophy- that art should be fun!

The only rules?

1. Please work quietly  (after all I'm sure Da Vinci had quiet, right?)

2. It does not have to be perfect  (Should'nt we all take that one to heart huh?)

and the last and best rule of all....

3. Have Fun!!!

Creativity Rules!

These 3 simple rules have revolutionized the way I view art now. Being the kid that had to have everything perfect growing up, I can appreciate the fact now that art is not perfect!! All art is subject to interpretation, and mistakes can sometimes be the catalyst for much greater things! Like I tell my kids when teaching them art - no one will have the same drawing, no ones will look just their neighbors- and no ones will be perfect because there is no such thing as "perfect" in art!

When teaching any child in art, whether at home or in class, keep in mind that what they see and what you see are 2 different things! Never scold a child for not doing art a certain way or not doing it the way you think it should be done.

Instead encourage them to use their imagination and creativity when doing art, let them explore with different mediums and see which ones they gravitate towards, and most importantly, have fun with them!

You never know, you may be teaching the next Monet or Rembrandt!

(Dorsi Diaz is a freelance writer and blogger in the San Francisco Bay Area)

Poll on Art and Teaching

Growing up did you have fun doing art?

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  • waynet profile image

    Wayne Tully 9 years ago from Hull City United Kingdom

    Drawing is just the best thing I learned to love doing as a kid and I still do now, as a big kid(all us men are apparently!!)

    Drawing should be fun as imagination in drawing is a wonderful thing, so who knows what someone will draw right from being a child up until they are all grown up.

    Good luck with the art teaching...I've thought about it but I'd rather blog about it!!

  • Dorsi profile image

    Dorsi Diaz 9 years ago from The San Francisco Bay Area

    Thanks everyone for stopping by, reading and commenting on my hub. Yes there are many positive things to be said for art - it builds self esteem, it encourages creative thinking, provides an outlet and is also very healing.

  • Jo Brown profile image

    Jo Brown 9 years ago from North of the Border

    Thanks Dorsi for pointing out the multitude of quality resources available to teach art to children. Looks like great resources for adults as well!

  • Cris A profile image

    Cris A 9 years ago from Manila, Philippines

    Hi Dorsi

    I alsa taught art when I was in college as a humanities/art studies major but it was a for a "rehabilitation" program for children who underwent the trauma of a natural disaster - a volcano eruption. We were tasked to somehow help the children tell their traumatic stories through art as it would catalysed their healing. It was a very rewarding experince. :D

  • MamaDragonfly2677 profile image

    Shannon 9 years ago from New York

    My children have all been blessed with an artistic hand! (Maybe takin' after mom???) Your a guardian angel for teaching art to children! Great decision for a career! Good luck Dorsi! I look forward to your hubs.

  • SweetiePie profile image

    SweetiePie 9 years ago from Southern California, USA

    Teaching art to kids is amazing because they are so open and great artists, especially since they are not inhibited about what other people will think about their art work. Today at work the librarian asked me to design a sample of a paper book bag, illustrating what the kids could do on family day, and I had the most fun doing this. I imagined I was a kid and drew a flag in the center and placed several flag stickers around the corner of the bag. I decorated the emply space by creating little fireworks with white and red crayons.