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Tapestry

The Drawings Of Reception Boys: Fantasy And Frustrations


HappyMaz
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Well what an eye-opener! I thought I would go in search of Helen's articles about recent Ofsted inspections so I could print them off to read tomorrow, but my eyes alighted on a new article about boys' drawing and so I took a look.

 

What struck me particularly is the author's conclusion that practitioners should not be worried that drawing for children will stifle their creativity, but rather that drawing needs to be modelled in the same way as writing.

 

I have always been wary of drawing for children when they say they cannot draw something because I fear that I might be reinforcing their view that they cannot draw (although heaven knows I'm useless at drawing and so could never be said to be an expert!). Perhaps I've been missing a trick here - maybe I should show them my drawing skills and see what they make of my pictures? Maybe for a change the children should be the ones to stroke their chins thoughtfully and say "wow - tell me about your picture"?

 

When talking to parents about their children's drawings, the author says they reported feeling that their child was often disappointed because their drawings didn't accurately portray what was in their minds. Now I can completely understand this because my view of my own lack of drawing ability is based on the fact that no matter how hard I try it never turns out as I would hope.

 

So what do you think? Do you think drawing for children inhibits their creativity? Or that it might help children work out how to draw what is in their imagination more satisfactorily - according to their own criteria rather than the adult's?

 

Whatever your views, if you are interested in drawing - particularly that of boys - go and read Emese's article. Very thought provoking indeed (although perhaps that isn't what I need just before bed time!).

 

Maz

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Wow, I loved that article! I need to read it again tho, and probably again after that to fully appreciate it. As you say, it really challenges our thinking doesn't it? It also reminds me so much of my eldest daughter who also became hugely frustrated by the fact that her drawings weren't right or good enough - as it says in the article this could have been that it didn't match the picture in her head but I remember her drawing a beautiful bird one day and saying that it was wrong and demonstrating that a teacher or TA had shown her that birds could be drawn in two strokes like a 'tick' shapes......

It is so easy to stifle children's creative ability isn't it?

 

There's a poem about a child's experience of art in the classroom - I'm off to see if I can find it! Thanks for pointing out the article!

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Happily my son loves to draw and paint now, he used to get really upset and say I can't do it. My daughters draw and paint all day and really encourage him, I've given up a kitchen cupboard for all their drawing and painting equipment which they all use every day, and this has really helped him.

 

I'm an article junkie and can happily admit I've printed of nearly all of them to read and have often used them in my assignments; properly referenced of course.

Karrie

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Is anyone watching the new series on Sky Arts with the chap who used to be a master forger and went to prison? So far I've seen him paint John Cleese in the style of Matisse and the bloke from Stone Roses in the style of Cezanne. Its absolutely brilliant and really makes me want to hav a go! Anyway, he said Cezanne could not draw but never gave up trying and eventually it 'clicked'. So, we should always keep encouraging our children and praising their efforts - they could be the next Cezanne!

 

Aliamch, we too had a cupboard of art stuff in our kitchen and its only just gone - my girls are 17 and 20! (They told me off tho and made sure I haven't thrown anything away 'just in case....') :o

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I got O level art and thought I was reasonably good until I met my husband who was then an architectural technician and a very precise drawer. He had a huge folder of artwork, still life, life sketches etc and makes absolutely fantastic drawings of all manner of things, quite a few of which have been published in professional journals and publications.

 

So now I feel I can't draw at all, I gave up trying. So I can REALLY empathise with children looking at what they've done in comparison with someone else's work. I don't ever draw for a child unless they specifically ask me, and then I do it very piece-meal in simple shapes which they can replicate. AND I always let them critique!

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Yay! Actually managed to find the poem..... here it is!

 

(Maz, I'm very disturbed by your new avatar :( you won't poke me in the eye will you?)

LJW thanks for this poem - I am going to print it out for the staff. I read it a long time ago and my heart went out to the little boy because I knew that in many ways I had been a bit like this when doing activities like this with my own children at toddler group and at home until I saw the light and took up childcare as a career! :o

 

You have no need to fear my avatar though - its my eye being poked! xD

 

Maz

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And pretty soon

The little boy learned to wait,

And to watch

And to make things just like the teacher.

And pretty soon

He didn't make things of his own anymore.

 

Then it happened

That the little boy and his family

Moved to another house,

In another city,

And the little boy

Had to go to another school.

This school was even bigger

Than the other one.

And there was no door from the outside

Into his room.

He had to go up some big steps

And walk down a long hall

To get to his room.

And the very first day

He was there,

The teacher said:

"Today we are going to make a picture."

"Good!" thought the little boy.

And he waited for the teacher

To tell what to do.

But the teacher didn't say anything.

She just walked around the room.

 

When she came to the little boy

She asked, "Don't you want to make a picture?"

"Yes," said the lttle boy.

"What are we going to make?"

"I don't know until you make it," said the teacher.

"How shall I make it?" asked the little boy.

"Why, anyway you like," said the teacher.

"And any color?" asked the little boy.

"Any color," said the teacher.

"If everyone made the same picture,

And used the same colors,

How would I know who made what,

And which was which?"

"I don't know," said the little boy.

.And he began to make pink and orange and blue flowers.

 

He liked his new school,

Even if it didn't have a door

Right in from the outside!

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Cait! That's made my day.......... I've never seen the last bit of the poem - I honestly thought it stopped at the point that I stopped!

Thanks for sharing.

 

It would be good for a staff meeting to look at the first bit of the poem as a team and discuss, then read your bit afterwards!

 

Hmm, just off to add it to the agenda!

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Hello, and thank you for your comments on my article.

 

It's very exciting for me to see that my research is provoking interest. I've been privileged to collect nearly 900 drawings from the children in my project and the article only contains a small selection.

 

Regarding my recommendations, I think it's very important for young children to see adults drawing -even if the adults do not see themselves as 'good' drawers. The EYFS guidance says that children should see adults reading and writing, but doesn't mention adults drawing. Why is this?

 

I was pleased to read the second part of the poem - I'd never seen that before.

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Welcome to the forum! Congratulations on making your first post.

 

It's a good point about the EYFS guidance, I'd noticed that too. Glad you liked the second part of the poem - I've never seen it without the second bit, it's a bit depressing without it.

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Aliamch, we too had a cupboard of art stuff in our kitchen and its only just gone - my girls are 17 and 20! (They told me off tho and made sure I haven't thrown anything away 'just in case....') :o

 

We got my eldest daughter a graphics tablet for her 13th birthday, I was a bit reluctant as I thought it might stop her 'real' drawing; happily she does both equally, maybe because it's taking her a while to master the tablet and also she still enjoys using all the different types of paints. My younger sister still paints for enjoyment and has bits stashed at my mum's house which is graet when all the grandchildren are over, we have a real paint fest. xD I don't think I'll have my cupboard back for many years though either.

 

Welcome to the forum EHall, hopefully you'll write some more wonderful articles for us to discuss. :(

 

Karrie

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Guest tinkerbell

I loved your article EHall

 

Thank you for making me and others think about our practice.

 

I do draw alongside the children and do a running commentory as I do when writing a shared sentence......I too believe children need to see aduts modelling a variety of work.

 

Tinkerbellx

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It's very exciting for me to see that my research is provoking interest. I've been privileged to collect nearly 900 drawings from the children in my project and the article only contains a small selection.

Well it got my brain working at an ungodly hour of the morning when I should have been in bed fast asleep!

 

Congratulations on making your first post - I'm glad you have cleared up that little query in my head (why your article was in 'Members' articles' - I was too tired to investigate any further).

 

Now that you've made your first post I hope you'll get more involved in Forum life - when time allows! I'm sure you have a lot of expertise and opinion to share - and we do like to have knowledgeable brains to pick! xD Not that I'm saying that the existing Forum brains are not prodigious. :o

 

Maz

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Congratulations on making your first post - I'm glad you have cleared up that little query in my head (why your article was in 'Members' articles' - I was too tired to investigate any further).

 

I'm not sure what conclusion you came to Maz, but 'Members articles' are only available for subscribing members, whereas the visitor ones can be viewed by anyone. :o

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I'm not sure what conclusion you came to Maz, but 'Members articles' are only available for subscribing members, whereas the visitor ones can be viewed by anyone. xD

I thought it was articles by Members in 'Members' and articles from Visitors in 'Visitors'... :o

 

Ho hum! :(

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I thought it was articles by Members in 'Members' and articles from Visitors in 'Visitors'... :o

 

Ho hum! :(

 

 

Snap! xD

 

I havent read the article yet, but I do always feel if I draw something, however badly, the children will think their attempt isnt as good, and yet I dont do that when I write for them or let them see me writing. Isnt that odd?

I remember at school in primary we had to do a freize of birds. I still have a picture in my head of what I thought it should look like and still remember the absolute disapointment at the finished work.

I've been thinking of starting evening classes inpainting, this might make me take the plunge with no expectations.

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You should go for the painting class, Rea! It's amazing what vivid memories we can have of early experiences, like your disappointment in the bird frieze.

 

I have to admit when I first starting teaching, in a reception class, I chose not to display the children’s drawings because I didn’t think they looked ‘good enough’ to go on the walls. Instead I put up paintings, collages etc. What a misguided approach!

 

It’s wrong as adults to judge children’s drawings on their aesthetic merits: drawing isn’t just about making pretty pictures - is it? Meaning is often so much more important.

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I agree with Emese, Rea, you should go for the class, but if you're a real beginner make sure it IS a beginners' class........I enrolled years ago on a Watercolour Class that was advertised as a beginners' class, but they were all Constables :o My pathetic attempts were in a class all of their own and I was too embarrassed to go after the first couple of weeks :( I should have looked for a class for "Absolute Beginners!"

 

I'm so pleased about the positive response you've had to your article, Emese. Congratulations and the very best of luck with your PhD. Keep in touch with us on the FSF won't you? xD

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