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Should My Child Take Art Classes?

A cartoonist might have caught the drawing bug from early art classes.
Children who are given artistic opportunities develop creative problem solving skills.
Art classes for kids may focus on one genre, such as painting or drawing.
Some ideal classes for very young children include "mommy and me" art classes.
Children who make things with clay might want to move on to art classes.
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  • Written By: Tricia Ellis-Christensen
  • Edited By: O. Wallace
  • Last Modified Date: 17 November 2014
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Art classes can be a wonderful way for children to express their creativity, while at the same time learning fundamental skills that will improve their artistic endeavors. Art classes for kids can come in many forms. They can be specific to one genre, like drawing, painting or sculpting, or they may explore several types of art. For young children, art classes are often relatively freeform affairs that simply give children an opportunity to create without restrictions.

Some children begin to draw very early. They may enjoy painting, drawing or playing with clay at one or two years old. Some ideal classes for very young children include mommy and me art classes. The parent and child participate together, and the parent is there to help a very young child who might struggle with sitting or drawing for long periods of time. These courses can be single day affairs, or may meet one time a week for several weeks. They are fun introductory art classes where emphasis is placed on enjoyment rather than technique.

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As children get older, they may enjoy taking art classes with a bit more emphasis on acquiring skills. They usually attend art classes with a small group of other children. Again, these types of art classes can be offered for one day only, or may take place one day a week for a set period of time. Often both "mommy and me," and introductory art classes for slightly older children can be quite inexpensive, especially when offered through organizations like city Parks and Recreation programs.

As a child takes more art classes, he or she may be drawn to a particular form of art. One may have a budding sculptor, a potential painter, or a cartoonist in the making. As the child is able to express interest in particular types of art, look for art classes tailored to that interest.

Not all children want to take art classes. Some kids may be more interested in breaking crayons rather than drawing with them. If after a class or two, your child really isn’t interested, there are many other ways for your child to be creative.

The difference in what they would like to produce and what they actually can produce also frustrates some children. In these cases, art classes might prove more annoying than beneficial. Instead look for the wells of creativity in your child that are expressed in other forms. Perhaps the child is better suited to dancing, theater, building Lego machines, or sports rather than art.

However, for the child interested in art classes, parents really should consider looking for good ones. With fewer art opportunities in schools, as many programs get cut down to basics, chances to do art at school can be limited. Augmenting a child’s education by providing art classes on the side may help fuel a lifelong interest in art, and provide that special opportunity for your child to express his creativity.

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alex94
Post 3

When I was little, I used to love to watch Bob Ross on his painting show. I think it aired on PBS. He had the frizzy hair and he was very gentle speaking. He would say things like “Now, we are going to put a pretty little tree by the water”. I loved that show.

I think he also used to teach children's art classes.

GrumpyGuppy
Post 2

@dill1971: I remember those art tests. They would also be on matchbooks sometimes. They had pirates, turtles, and a few other characters to draw. The most famous one was Tippy the Turtle. You would try to draw it and then send it in to the Art Instruction Schools, where an expert would look it over and send you some feedback.

A couple of weeks ago, I saw a commercial on TV and it had the picture of Tippy the Turtle. I didn’t even know they still did that. Now, you can actually do it online instead of mailing it in. You can scan your drawing and email it to them.

dill1971
Post 1

When I was young (many years ago), I remember comic books often had an art test that you could cut out and mail in. It seems like it was of a turtle or something. Does anyone remember that?

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