The usefulness of art methods in reducing daily life stress for children
As children grow up, they are surrounded by competition-centred institutions. All this competitiveness has both advantages and disadvantages. The advantage being it encourages other students to work harder than usual, looking at their peers doing so. That is one of the most useful things about making students study in groups. It helps teach these children fundamentals like community care and co-existence.
However, one of the disadvantages is the discouragement that is caused by students by looking at others working so hard and not being able to do the same. For example, children with ADHD, autism, sleep disorders or hearing problems, find it more difficult than other children to fit in these circles of academia. Different children have different concentration levels, and a teacher or a parent must understand how to work to keep everyone together.
In these environments, there is an almost institutionalised compulsion of including art classes. But that again acts as a hurdle as impositions on children don't always work in their favour. Encouraging children to practice art forms is as important as teaching them mathematics and languages.
Painting, colouring, art journaling, writing poetry, story-writing etc are a few basic activities that can help children develop a taste for aestheticism. However, a lot of people believe that letting children practise these is more important than sending them to art classes. Once a child learns how to paint, he/she/they can explore on his/her/their own. The same is with reading as well, reading fiction can help enhance children’s imagination and creative skills.
Popular fiction that you can encourage your children, to read :
- ‘Percy Jackson and the lightning thief’, the series
- ‘Harry Potter series and ‘The Chronicles Of Narnia series
- Books by Enid Blyton, ‘the famous five’ & ‘the secret seven’ story collections
- Art magazines like ‘Amar Chitra Katha’
- Tintin comics and others
(These are the mainstream titles, there are lots more)
Helping children relieve their stress is important because it could then result in physical and mental health problems in the future, like obesity, heart diseases, anxiety and depression.1
Some of the art therapy activities for children are :
- Abstract painting on large canvases
- Free poster colour painting on clothes, making t-shirts and tote bags out of that
- Taking them to the various art and film exhibitions, to give them exposure to the rich cultural art methods
- Attending pottery workshops for beginners
- Making models out of clay or mould
- Helping them decorate their rooms with dream catchers, posters and paintings. (Helping them understand how crucial it is to create an artsy/therapeutic surrounding around us to help us work better towards our goals)
- Helping them plant seeds in small pots so that they can see them grow.