Art, Art and education, creativity

Clay tutorial

The spring is coming, every piece of land is turning green. Colorful flowers open up, it is the right moment to go for a walk in the nature with children. Get amazed about each leave, tree, flowers, animals… Collect any material that inspires you, they will help us in this tutorial. Children, for sure, will make a bouquet of flowers to color your living room, they can be used to embellish your creations too.

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Put your apron, ready? Start ! To make clay is a good activity to get dirty but it is also the best way for children, since early years, to shape the matter. Run away from chemical plasticine, use the most natural clay or salt dough if you cannot find it. Avoid all mold, in addition to limit the will of your child, often, it cuts them from any process of imagination and creation. If you are doing this outside, I hope for you that the sun is shining, prepare a bowl with a little of water for your clay to not get dry too fast. Just dip you finger is enough, I don’t want your clay time becomes a swimming pool.

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During first minutes, let your child experiment, don’t give any direction or stimulation. Just do your own, you will be surprised how much a child can learn by itself. Experimenting matter is extremely important during first years, which is why I insist on using natural material. They do not have a whole life experience of earth gravity that has an adult, they are just starting discovering it. Every tiny drop of clay, a child is learning. Each touch with clay, modeling it with both hand, creates new neural connexions and increases left/right hands coordination.

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To finish the activity –  yes you understood the result do not matter –  I propose you to make ornamented bowl. Use your “harvest” to decorate your bowl; you can choose to let them sticked or to just keep the shape inlaid. Let it dry in a soup plate or a bowl to keep the shape.

Show the best example to your child. Don’t try to explain what you are doing. Better to keep silence or even sing, but try to not put words while the hands needs to be stimulated only. Pay attention in your own creation. Let your child experiment by itself. These will strongly influence the global benefits.

In the next tutorial I will relate you how get the best benefits of “Painting time“.

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Art, Art and education, creativity, Education

Creativity benefits

The hidden benefits of creativity. Children, teenagers and adults, creative being is an art of living. I hope through this article infuse creativity into your life.

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Our “modern” education has largely relegated creativity to oblivion. Learning only centered on the development of the single mind, leading to its hypertrophy, and this increasingly at young age, lead to the opposite of what was supposedly expected.
The explosion of technology with the trivialization of television and games consoles of all kinds – to which children are also exposed earlier and earlier – have condemned the creativity of generations of children except a few happy islands of exception. The lasting loss of creativity is a real inner death that amputates the child from infinite potential without counting that it seriously reduces humanity.

baby-84626_1280Your child is having a blast finger-painting with a mix of colors. Trying to be encouraging, you ask her, “What are you making?” and she shrugs. Until you mentioned it, she hadn’t given it any thought. Little kids are masters of the moment – they love the way it feels when they smear paint on paper, how it looks when they sprinkle glitter, and even the soft sound a brush makes as it crosses the page. Unlike older kids and adults, most toddlers and preschoolers aren’t self-conscious about what they’re doing or focused on creating a finished product. That can be hard for parents to accept, says Lisa Ecklund-Flores, cofounder and executive director of Church Street School for Music and Art, in New York City. But letting go – and allowing kids to enjoy the process of creation – can reap big rewards. “Children will be better off in the long run if they’re allowed just to be in the moment and express themselves,” she says.

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Fostering creativity won’t just increase your child’s chances of becoming the next Picasso. You’re also helping him develop mentally, socially, and emotionally, says Ecklund-Flores. Creating art may boost young children’s ability to analyze and problem-solve in myriad ways, according to Mary Ann F. Kohl, author of Primary Art: It’s the Process, Not the Product. As kids manipulate a paintbrush, their fine motor skills improve. By counting pieces and colors, they learn the basics of math. When children experiment with materials, they dabble in science. Most important perhaps, when kids feel good while they are creating, art helps boost self-confidence. And children who feel able to experiment and to make mistakes feel free to invent new ways of thinking, which extends well beyond the craft room.learn-2004896_1920A formidable thruster in a professional environment : in the current economy, more and more companies are looking for creative people. These individuals, by their great ability to solve problems in an original and clever way, help them to stay in the race of progress and business. Because creativity goes far beyond being able to achieve beautiful paintings or even solve problems. It is an aptitude that stimulates the whole of your thought process!

A booster of self-confidence : trying new things helps boost self-confidence. Being creative allows us to explore many aspects of our personality and reinforce what we already know about ourselves. This can allow us to discover new talents that we were not aware of before. This process can reinforce our sense of identity and, therefore, increase our level of trust.

A serious more for your social relations : creativity facilitates social relations. Being open-minded and proposing original views on things usually seduces people, I have noticed many times. First, because being curious you allow to talk about a multitude of diverse subjects. But also because in doing so, you share your knowledge, your discoveries with those around you.

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Nowadays success lies mainly in the connections we can make between things. And it is the people who ask questions such as “why” or “why not” who will make the most constructive connections.

Taking time to enjoy creative activities is one of the best investments to nurture body and mind.

What is wonderful about improving creativity is that it allows us to learn to look at the world from a different angle. As I said above, being creative is not just about art or music.

It is first and foremost the way we approach life.

In my next article I will give you fresh ideas to boost creativity.

See you soon

Alexandre

source : Parents.comcreativity benefits (french)creativity (french)

 

 

 

 

Art, Art and education, Education

Case study

During the late 2016 I had the opportunity to give lessons to Adele, a 4 years old girl. I found this case very interesting, and her drawings are awesome. I relate now our story.

Adele at 4 can already have a conversation in English in addition to Russian, her native language. She is quite creative, playful and smart. 

After our first session, she made those two nice drawings alone. During this session we’ve tried to avoid borders/lines in our drawing. It can sound senseless, but it is fundamental.

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More and above a new way of drawing, that creates new connexion in our brain. We see fully objects, and not only their contour.

The greatest challenge was to make her understood that the path is far more important then the result. We experienced a lot of fun in this collaboration.

Defined drawing can block young child imagination. These are example that I draw to inspire her. 

This is what she responds. Her drawings are totally full, I usually not expect such at this age.

These drawings were done with 14 days intervals. They look outwardly similar. In the first drawing the house is not rooted, the roof seem heavy and weighing. She asked help to complete it. In the second one she draw herself with her dog, the house is rooted and the roof seems protective. It looks like the house is growing from the top.

Adele overpass some fears by climbing trees.

I am deeply grateful to Adele and Elmira. Thank you

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