How can you help children get the most learning and fun out of these projects?
1) Read the complete directions for each project out loud with children before they start, and help them with the mechanics of getting started. Each project will be different.
2) Make sure they have the needed materials and ample, mess-up-able space to work.
3) Encourage them to go back to the project whenever they want to work on it, whether for an hour or for five minutes, over the course of a month. (Their art will be richer if it develops over time.) And to FINISH the project. Very important!!
4) Encourage them (and yourself) to be open to whatever the artwork looks like. I tell ALL of my students, including the art teachers I’ve taught at a graduate level, “There are no right or wrong answers in art.”
Why is that important? The fastest way to shut young creativity down is to judge or compare. Yes, on a math test, there are correct and incorrect answers. In art the opposite is true. We can’t truly know what works or doesn’t – art is very personal – or whether a child whose work seems hard to understand now will go on to develop brilliant, insightful art later. NONE of us know those things. FROGGY, our mascot, cheers every child on.
That’s the Eyeball It!® model.