Drawing with Children - Ideas and experiences

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Drawing with Children - Ideas and experiences

Unread post by momof3nKS »

Drawing with Children vs. I Can Do All Things???
Laura M wrote:I am doing 1st grade with my 2 boys and am really enjoying it but I had a question about the art aspect of this program.

I have both of these art books (Drawing with children or I can do all things) and it just seems like "I can do all things" is geared to young children and maybe should be used first and then "Drawing with children" next year.

I would appreciate any advice or testimonies with those having experience with these art programs.
My first thought is different strokes for different folks and do what you think is best.

Obviously, there is a reason why the Hazells put DWC before ICDAT. They have done the research, not me. I have done a bit of both books.

In some ways, I think DWC is good for 1st because you use a pencil or permanent pen for the most part. When you get into ICDAT, you experiment with pencils, colored pencils, markers, and paint. You also work more on techniques.


mom to dd7, ds6, dd3
working on ECC and 1st this year
Heather in GA
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Unread post by Heather in GA »

This is just my artistic brain's humble opinion :) , but DWC teaches the child to look at the world with an observant eye, to draw what they see and not worry about how it might look or think about the end product. It helps the child relax and stop thinking "I can't draw!" and helps them to just, well, draw. Does that make sense? For that reason I agree that it's a great book for 1st grade and better to use before diving into the different techniques as in ICDAT ... Hope that helps!!



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Art - Drawing with Children vs. I Can Do All Things

Unread post by Ariasarias »

Happy2BMotherof3 wrote:Hi everyone....well I have all my stuff and I was looking through the Adventures I can do all things art book.......and the first grade artbook Drawing with Children and the Drawing with children looked to be more challenging than the other one. Is it just me? I haven't read through it but there seems to be more reading than anything. For those of you who have used it is it easier than it looks? The Adventures artbook looks easier. Any thoughts?
I haven't use I Can Do All Things, but Drawing with Children is easy and it is lots of reading at the beginning. I had the same thought when I looked at it last year. I didn't use it then, thinking it was too much.

I'm so glad I picked it up this year and tried. I would read it though, if you have a chance. It help me understand the importance of teaching children to draw and I understand more why Marie has chosen to include this with the program. I am not a drawer at all, yet I just drew the carousel horse with my daughter. It's nothing I would show many people, but I am impressed. It actually resembles a horse.

I think I've heard others here say that do the drawing first just helps set the stage for art in general. The author teaches you how to "see" what you are drawing by seeing the elements of shape. It's even helped my three year old. She hasn't produced anything like I've seen in the book, but as I watch her draw I can see she is trying to see those elements. She even talks about them as she looks at objects at times. I say go for it!!!
Nicole, wife to Claudio since 1996, and mom to dd (2000), dd (2003), dd (2005), and ds (2009).

Ideas for condensing the first section

Unread post by cbollin »

Blessed with six wrote:I am really wanting to use Drawing With Children for 2 of my kids that are doing MFW 1st Grade. My question is this...

Is it really necessary to answer all the beginning questions, drawing and analyzing how you feel about it etc or can I simply read through the beginning 39 pages or so and then get started? I like the idea of Drawing with Children just wanting to know if you all use it and do you do everything suggested in the first several pages?

Thanks a bunch!
Wife to Clayton 17 years, mother to: dd14, dd12, ds10, dd7, dd4, ds2 and baby Josiah, who is now 1 month old!
I might be wrong about this, but here are my interpretations of How not to get too bogged down in those Pages during the first few days of 1st grade (especially when you just had a baby!)

You'll still need to read the book, but here are some highlights from my personal point of view. (I could be way off base)

p. 4 – I’m not sure if it is necessary for children to take the I agree/I disagree survey. Nice for adult to read through a bit. It's designed to encourage you as an adult in case you aren't artsy.

p. 5 Both mom and child do the practice drawing with the scene.

p. 6 Reflecting on how you feel --- probably not worth getting bogged down with this. I’ve interpreted this exercise as being for Mom to do with Mom’s practice drawing, not for kids to do with their own practice drawing. It will help you down the road if/when your child gets discouraged with drawing to be able to talk about it with them based on your experience. So don't skip it entirely, but you can just think about your feelings about your own art work.

p.7-20 --- read through this section now. Review it later or discuss it later with your child IF your child gets frustrated with their own art work.

p. 20-24 helpful to let your students know some of this or at least for mom to realize it

p. 25-27 – shopping tips for arts supplies. You’ll need basic supplies before doing the book.

p. 28-31 --- let your child look through the drawings in the book with you. If your children get nervous that they can’t draw like that, then review the paragraph on p. 30 called Sharing Your Feelings.

p. 30 – collecting things to draw is an ongoing process.

p. 32-39 --- teaching tips for you. Read them now and refer back as needed

I don’t think there is too much “to do” in those pages except to get your supplies, have the photocopies that are mentioned, Do a Practice Drawing (page 5), you and the kids scan the book together for fun and look at the picture. Much of the book is teaching tips and general encouragement. Remember that the 1st grade TM schedules when to do the other lessons past this point.

....and ((((hugs)))) and congrats about baby #7!!!!

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Unread post by RachelT »

Hi Kim! We used DWC earlier this school year with MFW 1st grade. I did read through the introductory information and it was good to get a better understanding of the author's philosophy. I remember just reading through some of those questions and thinking about my own feelings about my level of artistic abilities.

I think it was a good reminder of how my children may feel self-conscious about their own drawing abilities and it gave me a way to help them feel more at ease and comfortable. It really did help my ds move from "I hate to draw" to "I'd rather draw my own picture" (than use a coloring book page). So, that's a big accomplishment! I hope it's a positive experience for all of you!

Rachel, wife to Doug ~ 1995, mom to J (17) and B (15)
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Drawing With Children?

Unread post by Ariasarias »

Posted: Thu May 22, 2008 11:49 am
We did go ahead and use it and I am glad we did.
It gave my oldest, perfectionist dd the confidence to try to draw.
Before this book, she would cry at the thought of having to draw something with the thought that she might not do it "right."
As a family, we learned the basics of drawing and even what to do when we drew something we didn't like. We only did what the MFW lesson plans said to do and have not actually finished the book; but it really did help lay a very good foundation for drawing for our family. And the fear of messing up and all the tears that came with that have really not been seen as often as before :).

Re: Drawing With Children?

Unread post by Guest »

Posted: Thu May 22, 2008 11:56 am by cbollin
Drawing With Children is used in MFW 1st grade to help your child learn how to look at something and learn the fundamentals of drawing. It will help walk you through training your eye and hand to work together to make a picture that looks like what you are looking at. It is not a book that will assign specific art lessons in a workbook. Instead the idea is to learn to look at something, break it into the basic shapes (dots, lines, curves) and to put that on paper. It has some carry over in helping to follow instructions to get a finished product. I see it as a book that tries to help you “learn to fish” instead of “just having fish for the day”.

MFW schedules most of the book in the first grade program prior to the child starting the Bible reader notebooking. That way you have some art technique lessons before starting that notebooking.

The first part of the book is designed to help give you (parent teacher) guidance in how to coach a child to draw and to encourage them in the learning process. So, if you have limited confidence or experience or theory in how to coach a new art student, you might like that first part of the book. (I did.)

MFW 1st grade scheduled the readings and pace of the book. The parts of the book that are not scheduled are the advanced lessons that are used better when a child is older.

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"thanks mom!"

Unread post by pjssully »

Just wanted to share an awesome moment today. We began doing "drawing with children" andi am doing it with all my kids (11, 9, 6.5 twins) and they had the best time!!!Oneof my kiddos said, "thanks mom for buying this for us" and everyone else chimed it to say thanks too!! Just makes me realize again why i always come back to MFW
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I'm on the fence about DwC

Unread post by gratitude »

MelissaM wrote:My ds is not very enthusiastic about drawing, and his drawing skills are...hmmm...probably below average for his age group. So, I'm on the fence about DwC. I'd really LIKE to do it with him - for the very reasons that he might not love it. My dd, on the other hand, is quite the artist and would probably really enjoy doing lessons from this book. So, I'm considering doing DwC with both of them; but then, I don't think realistically we'd be able to keep up with the ECC Global Art book - which both kids also really like.

Thanks for any advice,
I wanted to chime in regarding the drawing book & music for 1st grade.

My oldest ds couldn't draw much for MFW 1. I didn't know how to teach him, and it wasn't something he did on his own. The book in MFW 1 changed all of that. He learned to draw! It has impacted his younger siblings who watch him draw and have learned a lot by watching him. It was so much fun to see a non-drawing boy turn into a drawer. I am looking forward to doing this book again with my second son. It has such good drawing lessons in it. I could never draw as a child the way he has learned to do.

I hope this helps for that part of your question.

Drawing with children seems to be for older children...

Unread post by cbollin »

Winni wrote:I've never actually tried this book with my 1st grader, but it seems a bit advanced for them. I'd love to hear from others about this. Thanks!
DWC is a multi level book. There are some advanced lessons at the end of the book that are not scheduled as part of MFW 1st grade.

I thought most of the exercises were doable with my children in that age range. I didn't use the book with my oldest until she was 4th grade. But my middle gal was 1st grade when she used it. Lots of it is about hand-eye coordination and drawing what you see in terms of basic art shapes: dots, circles, lines...

A lot of the book is background info for parent-teacher to know how to coach and encourage a child. Then you have skill based exercises. Yes, my middle gal was able to draw her pictures from the info in the book.

I haven't actually used it with youngest. hmmm... maybe I should since she's finally up to 1st grade handwriting now...... (sigh.. I know I shouldn't get down that she's that behind due to special needs, but I do)

just one opinion. I don't have pictures to prove what my children did. Yes, the book can be used by adults. but as you get into the book, you'll see that there are "beginning" and intermediate and advanced levels in each lesson.

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Re: Drawing with children seems to be for older children...

Unread post by tabby »

I agree with what Crystal posted. I used it with both of my kids in 1st and thought that it gave them a good foundation in drawing. I think kids sometimes get overwhelmed with trying to draw because they "know" how they want something to look but can't make it translate on to paper. DWC helps to give them a way to break down what they want to draw into groups of lines, curves, dots, etc. I know it was very helpful for my son who was NOT a drawer before the book. Part of it might have been his age or just being a boy but he just did not like to do it. He ended up loving the excercises and we did them multiple times because he enjoyed them so much. Now he enjoys drawing more (mainly airplanes of all sorts!) and is working through the "I Can Do All Things" lessons.

HTH :)
Tabatha :)
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Re: Drawing with children seems to be for older children...

Unread post by cefcdana »

I just started it with two 1sst graders and a K. So far, so good. We are drawing (no pun intended) out the lessons a bit so they get the concept of hte elements of shape down) I am so motivated to do it because I have some perfectionistic girls who are frequently unhappy with their drawings. I created lesson plans using the book and adding some of my own stuff. I'd be happy to share them. Donna Young also has some lesson plans for Drawing with Children on her website.
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Re: Drawing with children seems to be for older children...

Unread post by gratitude »

This book is wonderful! I thought it looked too advanced for my almost 1st grader/6 year old at the time too. He could draw very little when we started with the book. It was too advanced for my 5 & 3 that tried to join in, but my 6 year old did great. He can draw! I was absolutely amazed by the results. Within a lesson or two he was drawing very detailed pictures that I couldn't draw until I used that book with him. I still think of this books as one of the greatest gifts MFW has given our family. It was so good for my son who didn't like handwriting to really enjoy using his mind and pencil for drawing. Very settling. It is worth buying a good set of pencils for the drawings. I am looking forward to using this book again with my ds6 this year for 1st grade.
Julie in MN
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1st grade art and Drawing with Children

Unread post by Julie in MN »

MrsRobinson wrote:Okay, so I've bought and sold this book twice in my homeschool years. I thought I'd give it one more whirl since MFW recommended it. However, I just don't like it. Any recommendations for a good substitute?
Many thanks!
Well, you've received lots of other suggestions, and nobody here is asking about how to like DWC, but some folks reading the thread might be wondering, so I've decided to chime in :)

I haven't used DWC with a 1st grader because unfortunately all my kids were in ps. But I have used DWC with a high schooler, an artsy girl, and it went very well. The thing about the high school book, though, is that it adds 2-3 whole sections in the beginning just to "un-do" the idea that you can't draw. Because by that age, a majority of kids have decided that they "aren't good at art." She actually starts that book out by having the student scribble! I've always wondered if adults teaching DWC might benefit from doing those lessons first ;) But I would think that doing DWC at a younger age would help combat that big problem from getting a hold in the child?

I don't think of DWC as a how-to book. It isn't a matter of following the lessons until you "get it right." To me, it feels more like, "Try this... and try this... and try this..." And hopefully along the way, your children will find an art form that comes naturally to them or that they are inspired to work at. It's also got a lot of variety in examples of imperfect children's work, as well as ways to rework a drawing you aren't happy with (my ds could have used those). I feel like it's a good base in "you can make art" -- teaching kids that in one way or another, art is a whole world of opportunity to create. Then after that comes detailed technique, if the child wants to pursue a certain medium.

So that's another way to look at it, for those why want to.

For those who want something else, my son has used a few of those Draw Write Now books for specific projects. He also liked to have a Mark Kistler book on hand for doodling art when he felt like subbing that in for an art lesson.

Julie, married 29 yrs, finding our way without Shane
Reid (21) college student; used MFW 3rd-12th grades (2004-2014)
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Re: 1st grade art and Drawing with Children

Unread post by cbollin »

In 1st grade, DWC is used to help students learn to draw for their Bible notebook. you could use tracing paper for that notebook, or stickers, or other. So that is one way to think about it for what to sub. DWC is totally optional.
Julie in MN wrote:Well, nobody here is asking about how to like DWC but some folks reading the thread might be wondering, so I've decided to chime in :)
on that note...

things I liked about DWC include that it's a book to help with eye hand coordination practices too. Good for penmanship activities. and some language skills and following directions (use a Large dot, use a zig zag line), and then being able to describe to others what something looks like. after some structured exercises, then you have the skills and language to talk art together.

things I struggled with: exactly what Julie is mentioning -- getting over the mental block as an adult. everyone is better than me...

Cyndi (AZ)
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Re: 1st grade art and Drawing with Children

Unread post by Cyndi (AZ) »

I loved DWC. Seriously - it was my favorite art program ever. I have recommended that book to so many people and lost my copy when I loaned it out. Maybe it was my engineering background vs. an art background?

I think Usborne and Scholastic books about how to draw certain animals/people, etc., are pretty good at explaining techniques of drawing proportionate figures. We've gone through a few of them just to learn certain things that my dd wants to learn to draw. Draw Write Now books are pretty cool, too - I wish I had a few more of them.
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Re: 1st grade art and Drawing with Children

Unread post by gratitude »

cbollin wrote:on that note...
Well on this note I thought I would chime in too since we absolutely LOVE the book. So for those who might be reading and wondering if this book can work for a family, it certainly has worked for us.

We are going through it for the 2nd time this year, and it is just as much fun in our home as the first time. I was completely unable to draw before this book. So it helped me to give my children a skill that I think benefits them in many ways, and it helped my drawing too.

With 4 children I tend to simplify things in home schooling as much as I can. So with this book I completely focused on the drawings. Don't underestimate what a child can learn by drawing the bird, lion, parrot, and horse over and over again while following the directions. They ask for this book to come out, and will find it and bring it out to draw on their own. At this point my ds8 is starting to add a 3 dimensional look on his own to his drawings; which to me (as a non-drawer) is incredible. We have some great drawings on our walls of parrots and birds and carousel horses! Even my dd, who turns 5 this week, is drawing some amazing pictures since she is joining in this time. She was too young when we did it two years ago.

To me Drawing with Children has been one of the many gifts MFW1 brought into our home.

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Re: 1st grade art and Drawing with Children

Unread post by Yodergoat »

Oh, I should add that I did like the introduction to DWC, because it offered advice for telling children about how they CAN draw, even if they think they can't. I liked that part very much and used it one day with the students in my co-op drawing and pyrography class. It was reassurance that many of them needed. :)

It's just that the rest of the book didn't quite fit for me.... I can see that it could work very well for others!

A little off topic here...
I took art classes as a child (6-15?) from an elderly lady, 2 hours for $5 once a week. A great deal! She had several students working together in her basement, ranging from children like me to an 80-something lady. I mostly did drawing and oil painting. She died when I was a teen and it was a crushing blow to me... she was like a grandmother to me (my only living grandma lived far away). I suppose I follow her teaching pattern... find out the child's (or old lady's!) interest and help guide them to be able to meet the goal using real time instruction as you go. "Aw, see here Shawna where the deer's hoof looks flat? Remember that deer have a sharp angle to their feet. So let us try to make its toe look sharp and pointed, dainty. Yes, a little more... that's right!" She was like a female, older version of Bob Ross, so gentle. She always said "let us" instead of "let's" and although that bugged me to no end at the time I would be so happy to hear her sweet voice say, "Let us try again on that one." I miss her. :( Sorry. Got a little nostalgic there.

I kind of teach that way, giving an overview of technique to all and then going from student to student giving advice and guidance. But I suppose that style of instruction is only useful if the teacher already knows how to draw, huh? :~

Mayhap that is why no instructional book has really met my needs. None of them are Mrs. Villa Hamm. ;)
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Re: 1st grade art and Drawing with Children

Unread post by asheslawson »

I am using DWC & GATHOA - and I enjoyed DWC for the most part. I am absolutely no artist myself, but my dd LOVES to draw, paint, glue, cut, and otherwise destroy the craft room corner of our school room - thank you to my dh for adding this on to the outside of our home - sure saves the dinner table! I got some great pointers from DWC and use GATHOA with my older ds, although she has done a few of the exercises.

However, I have also used another alternative that I like - but I think I like it in addition to DWC, because I want them to draw without always copying someone elses drawings. I have a copy of Draw and Write through History - and she LOVES following the directions in this book when she draws in her notebook. I'm not sure if she's improved so much because of DWC or Draw and Write - but she has definitely improved. Her recent picture of Noah and the ark with, complete with animals, even got a compliment from her big brother! I wish I could say I follow any of them step by step - but I don't. Sometimes - when I'm focused on helping her brother with math or helping her read - they get a bit of a relaxed art lesson and I let them improvise some - but I am ok with that - since I've no idea how to teach art other than what I read in those books (don't tell them that). I love art - my aunt was an amazing artist with everything from painting, drawing, sculpting to sewing, but I just didn't acquire the skills. However - they don't seem to notice - and I love to take them to museums to see the many styles of art. Hopefully they will at least be able to draw in their science notebooks without worrying if someone else sees their sketch! But - maybe - just maybe - they'll end up with a little bit of my aunt's talent!!
"So then, just as you received Christ Jesus as Lord, continue to live in Him" Colossians 2:6
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Re: 1st grade art and Drawing with Children

Unread post by Smoakhouse »

I thought some of you might find this link helpful.
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Excited for Drawing with Children

Unread post by CaseyVG »

I was looking at the Drawing with Children book, and I am so excited to use this for myself! In school, I was always in band, so I never got to do an art class past middle school. I can't wait to learn along with my kids! I'm so thankful that homeschooling will allow my children to pursue their interests, no matter what they are. My kids will be able to play an instrument and learn art if they want to! Just had to share my excitement!

Caleb: ECC (finished MFW Adventures, 1st & K)
Rebekah: 1st (finished K)
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I blogged MFW K, 1st & Adventures at http://www.simplejoycrafting.blogspot.com
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Re: Excited for Drawing with Children

Unread post by Cyndi (AZ) »

That's so awesome, Casey! I loved DWC - I did everything in it along with my dd. :-) I had never really had any art training, either. I took engineering drafting in college, but was never "artsy." Four years later, I'm taking a painting class once per month and really enjoying creating my own artwork at home, too. It's wonderful to be able to meet our kids where they're at and teach them according to their bent, but it's really cool to get to do stuff that sparks interest in us, too! :-)
Mom2theteam wrote:I'm glad to read that someone is excited about it. I'm feeling :~ by it. I think I'm just overwhelmed. I'm not crafty and I can't draw. (I know, she says not to say that. ;) ) I'm feeling a bit intimidated by it. :~
I know the feeling, Heather. Just try it with your kids and do the exercises. I can't believe how much I learned from that book. My dd really improved, too.
Mom2theteam wrote:Thanks Cyndi. I was planning to go ahead with it even though it's a bit intimating. After all, HS'ing overall is still intimidating to me. 8[] I am secretly hoping it will help my drawing skills. Even my 6 year old draws better than I do with some stuff. He often says, "I'll teach you mom." &) LOL!
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Questions about Drawing With Children

Unread post by Mom2theteam »

bethinga wrote:How are your kids responding to the lessons? My child loved the first lesson, copying patterns. It inspired him to make all kinds of drawings afterwards. But, the Relaxation Exercises were a disaster. He's a perfectionist first child and got really upset trying to follow the instructions for relaxing his jaw, neck, and shoulders. I told him there was no wrong or right way to do it, as long as it was helping him relax. We just had to move on to the next thing.

For the Random Warm-Up, he was not random at all (although I never let on that it was anything other than great). He drew 5 boxes (one for each element) in which he drew each element separately, with black ink only, perfectly round dots and circles, and lines, angles, and curves that were all nearly the same length and thickness. To try and loosen him up a bit, I asked him to make a drawing of any one of the elements in many colors, lengths, and thicknesses. He did one drawing of red and orange circles, all very circular and tightly spaced, and another drawing of dots that was nearly identical (besides being colored in).

How am I going to loosen this kid up? I feel bad, like its somehow my fault. I'm sure as a first time mother I've probably done or said things during crafts to make him feel like it needs to be "just so". I've loosened up a lot myself from early last year. How can I undo any damage I may have caused? Or, if its just a first child thing, how can I help him loosen up?

Oh, and one more thing, after those last two lessons, he just seemed very grumpy. Not at all how he feels after painting. He loves drawing and painting, and it typically makes him feel very happy. Makes me wonder if I should "mess" with that by giving these lessons...
First off, you didn't do anything. He is a kid and a person with his own personality. I have a child who gets very upset if his anything he does doesn't turn out exactly like he wants, this includes art, sports, memorization and anything else. It's tough. It's just his personality and we have to work with it and help him find better ways to cope with him not being perfect. (Other than completely shutting down and sulking in the corner. :~ ) Saying this very gently, I think in this case, it might that you need to relax a little and adjust your expectations. Skip the relaxation exercises. We had to skip that too. If he does his own thing or isn't as random as you want, don't worry about it. The point is to have fun. If he isn't having fun, no one is going to enjoy it or learn. So, conform the program to fit his personality. He is still young. My oldest was 7.5 or so when we did the program. He did great. My youngers were 5.5. They were more like your son. We just went with it and got what we got from them. So, age makes a big difference too even if they are all in the same "grade."

I'm not sure I answered everything, but I hope I helped some.
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Re: Questions about Drawing With Children

Unread post by gratitude »

My kids loved Drawing With Children. The first time I went through it my oldest was 6. I do remember the first time being something he enjoyed, but the younger siblings not being able to do (they would have been 5, 3, 1 at that point in time). Since then all 3 of my oldest have done the drawings (parrot, horse, bird, etc.) in the book multiple times. It is the reason they know how to draw.

If he isn't enjoying the step by step instructions once you reach the actual drawings I would say lay it aside until the end of MFW1 so 'maturity' can happen that allows it to be more successful.

We never did the relaxation exercises. I mostly focused on the warm-ups the initial time and when we began it the second time and then after the first week or two each time the drawings.

It is a book they have pulled out again and again over the past 3 1/2 years to draw the step by step pictures; so for us it was worth doing.

I do recall the first time through though being a bit rougher; especially the first 4 weeks or so.

I hope this helps.
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Joined: Sun Jun 24, 2012 3:13 pm

Re: Questions about Drawing With Children

Unread post by bethinga »

Thanks. We have had on and off again success. I'm just taking it nonchalantly no matter what his reaction. "Good job! Now, let's move on to the next activity." Not really arguing whether or not it was as hard as he made it. About half the time, he's doing great, though.

I'm continuing to use the markers, but may switch to pens or pencils if that proves to be a problem.
Beth in GA
Mom to a boy and a girl
Using MFW since 2012
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