Article by Jennifer McGregor
The arts can be a valuable tool in supporting the educational and emotional development of a child with disabilities. Embracing creative arts helps children develop coping skills to deal with any behavioral challenges. Art also helps with coordination, socialization, and motor skills. From drawing to painting to drama, you have plenty of options for you and your child to explore. Here are some suggestions that may enhance your kid’s interest in the arts.
Visit a Local Museum
Museums offer a great way to spark interest in art. Visiting your local museum can help your child see from different perspectives and inspire them to explore their own creativity. To ensure your child has a positive experience, familiarize yourself with the museum’s layout prior to your visit. That way you’ll know which sections to visit if your child needs a break.
Help Them Pick a Musical Instrument
Music offers many cognitive benefits for children with disabilities. Help them pick a musical instrument by visiting a music store and trying several out until they find one they enjoy. Before investing in one, see if your music store offers a rental program. If your child needs music lessons, look for a teacher with experience in working with kids with disabilities. Remember, you don’t have to know how to read sheet music to play an instrument well.
Do Observational Drawing Outside
In observational drawing, you attempt to draw what you see. This helps kids learn about proportion, textures, depth, and details. While drawing, they discover how to use lines and shading for contours. Go outside with your kids and let them pick objects with their hands, then have them draw whatever they picked. Before getting started with this fun activity, make sure your yard is clean and free of any objects that can potentially be harmful to your child.
Have Fun With Textile Arts
Art can be based on different materials, including fabrics, which offer an excellent medium for kids to create their ideas. Have your child choose from the endless colors of fabric dye to create fuzzy pictures. Or encourage them to try making a quilt. Quilting encourages them to pick colors, cut out shapes and work on their fine motor skills while having fun.
Children of all abilities may struggle in some areas while excelling in others. By introducing your child to the arts, you can help them develop new skills, express their feelings and unleash their creativity. Those are all great things to be proud of.