Kids friendly art supplies9:20 AM
I have a line up of not just one, but two public holidays this week. And on these days, like all moms, I am hard pressed to find ways to keep my daughter entertained.
Coming from a long line of arts and DIY enthusiasts, I grew up with art material within easy reach. And, like all kids, it ended up where it is technically not supposed to go (the walls, the windows, the carpet....) it probably sent my mom into meltdowns more than once, though of course being the child at the time, I didn't get it. To me a wall was nice big blank canvas...sue me.
Now, I am on the other side of the proverbial fence. I am the mom dreading doodles on the walls, and like all moms of young kiddos, I have been there and attempted to wash so many walls I should be made the face of Magic Eraser...yeah that bad!
But, art is something great, and it is a great way to let your kids have fun. It helps develop the brain, encourage creativity, enhance hand eye coordination and children left to do it on their own might surprise you with amazing work of art (sometimes it is on paper, yes yes it happens).
I hear you now. You are saying "Wait, wait, wait! Did she write that kids should be left to do it on their own?"
And, yes, you read right. Kids should be left to create on their own at time, just not with the entire drawer worth of craft supplies.
In my home, the paint, glue, and glitter are off limit if I am not supervising the activity. The one time Ishita found the glitter and decided to use it was a disaster. My living room carpet looked like Tinkerbell and her friends died on it.
I however leave a box with a bunch of crayons and a can of markers out for her at all time, and a pair of kids friendly scissors (the kind that can only really cut paper). I also have a big tray of old xeroxes and papers she can use to doodle on along with a few colouring books she is free to use her own way. And she does tap into these supplies a lot.
From trial, errors and the resulting experience, I will say that the quality of the supplies you buy does matter A LOT.
We went through enoug cheapo markers, pencils and crayons to not want to buy them ever again. You know the kind that not only doesn't draw well on paper, but also breaks and dry hours after using them. And in most cases, these might have the crappiest covering on paper, but boy oh boy they work wonders on walls (and won't come off).
Yes, we've been there, with markers that doesn't come off the face. Crayons that do not come off the TV (don't ask), or the toilet bowl (no seriously, stop asking!), or the dog, or cat (I'll refer you to the previous braket). I've spent way too many hours rubbing my knuckles raw (and a fortune on Magic Erasers) in the past few years.
So much so that now, art supplies only have to follow two criterias to enter my home : Non toxic, and WASHABLE. So far the only brand that truly rocks my world when it comes to kids supplies is Crayola. Saves me the hassle of trying to explain to guests why my cat has turned blue and comes off the TV far easier than other brands.
You of course get lucky with cheaper items from time to time, but my advice is always do a test run before handing anything to your kids to doodle with.
And yes make sure the scissors you give them can only cut paper too. The been there done that will all nod in agreement with me, kids will cut hairs...any hair. It doesn't matter where they are, hair must be cut. Dolls, pets or own. The later of course being the most annoying of all.