Is your craft usually structured?
It can get very messy.
Young children love LOTS of glue and need to learn to hold scissors correctly and I am sure you have had your share of Art creations that are wall art or carpet sculptures? I remember finding Dimples one morning camped up under our king size Doona, quiet as can be.... I now have a lovely white flannelet fitted sheet with beautiful black swirls all over it!
For this reason I, as I am sure many parents do, easily fall into the habit of using quick easy craft ideas out of books and off the web that require few materials with the least amount of glue and let dimples make his own version of these cool craft projects. Cool yes, original No!
To celebrate Dimples creativity I decided to redesign a corner of our home as a Art Centre for him where he has the freedom to create what ever he wants to safely. Everything is at his level and organised. All his materials and tools are bright, appealing to the eye, easy to see and easy to reach. He calls this his "business" & his "Office work".
The materials in it are all his to use for the taking as he wishes, however there are rules he needs to obey such as using the bin, tidying up, using materials wisely not wastefully and sitting at his desk.
So far so good!
Dimples Art Centre includes-
- His own glue (sticks and clag only mind you),
- a scissor caddie,
- The scissor box You can check out the scissor box idea here
- sticky tape,
- some craft jars (sequins, googly craft eyes and beads),
- a crayon caddy,
- a pencil pot,
- a pot full of bingo stampers & stamps,
- a pot full of kids stamps and hole Punch's,
- colour coordinated markers in jars (These are office pen jars painted and hung on the side of the shelf)
- a file of coloured paper and card stock,
- a box full of colouring in books,
- a box full of craft paper and envelopes (cellophane, crepe, wrapping paper)
- Craft draws with felt stickers, pipe cleaners, pompoms, ribbons, chipboard letters and numbers.
- His own Desk, Bin and Display string with clips.
Dimples is nearly 4 and has been very responsible in his space, if he were a little younger or this space was tucked away in an area out of sight I wouldn't be comfortable with this much freedom. There are times when he will just sit and cut different shapes right into the bin from his scrap paper, he is still learning, focusing and practising important skills so I am happy for him to do this.
That is the beauty of the art centre. It is meant to provide freedom so if he feels like sharpening all his pencils for no apparent reason then he can, if he feels like folding a pompom over and over again inside a treasure map then he can, if he feels like cutting a bit of paper into a million pieces then he can and every once in a while he makes an awesome creative piece of art that I get to hold on to.