Art Ideas for Students that Think They are Artless

by C. Mackay - Date: 2007-08-22 - Word Count: 551 Share This!

Some students in school feel that they have no ability in the art area. They stop drawing as young as second grade because they do not draw as well as the pictures that teachers have handed them out to color since they were young. So what! Who can draw that well?

Many of us cannot draw, but we like to doodle. Doodling should be encouraged so that students can start feeling friendly with their pencils. Doodling gives them a way to loosen up their wrists and have a steadier hand. It also helps students hand writing because they get better control of their pencils.

Students need to express themselves through their drawings because art is a way to express their inner thoughts and feelings. Art is used in therapy and counseling sessions and students should be encouraged to display their artistic abilities. You never know they might find it very enjoyable and and stress releasing.

Yes, students should be able to color a picture, but coloring a picture is not drawing. Art lessons are important for the basics, but most students are not going to become artists and they will feel bad if their picture is not like the teachers. Some things like shading, perspective and where the eyes should be placed on a head are basics and students could incorporate them into their drawings with very little stress. They just need to feel free to draw what is in their imaginations or what they see around them and feel safe from criticism. I used Art Starts to get my students started on ideas.

No criticism is very important. With children their needs to be some ground rules about what is and what is not appropriate for the school room, but then all comments should be generic such as: Tell me about your picture. That is an interesting idea tell me about your picture. I never thought about it that way, you have a real different idea there.

The rules for what they draw should be rules with why that rule is in effect. I tried to do it humorously because the students accepted the rules because they understood why.
1. No weapons because schools are not tolerant of weapons.
2. No blood and guts because someone might get sick
3. Use the whole page because an artist doesn't just put the picture in the middle and leave the outside black.
4. No names of people should be used.
5. Color is essential because we see in color and it makes our pictures stand out.
6. Do not wrinkle and wad up your picture because it is being put in a book.
7. No negative comments about pictures and that includes your own.
8. Be proud enough of your picture to sign it in the lower right hand corner.

Be sure to display the students work and encourage them to talk about their art with each other and with you. If they still feel that they cannot draw or paint pull out a book of Picassos and tell them how much one of his paintings sold for Dora Maar au Chat sold for USD $95.2 million at Sotheby's on May 3, 2006.
Resource Box - Caroline Mackay 2007
Caroline Mackay is a retired teacher of thirty seven years and writer and producer of many school programs. She is the host of

Related Tags: education, artist, artists, school, teaching, art, elementary, lessons, teach, teachers, primary, drawing, grade school

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