|Turtles and Caimans in the tropical terrarium.|
Unlike paints, drawing materials are light-weight and easy to transport and require little effort to unpack. I brought along the following:
1) small plywood boards to use as a stable surface for drawing (you can find these at a hobby shop or home improvement-type store)
2) colored pencils
3) A4-sized paper
A word about colored pencils: always buy good-quality ones or else they are no fun for children to draw with. The kind you get on airplanes or at a dollar store can take all the pleasure out of drawing, because the child has to press down hard to make a mark and cramp the fingers.
While children are usually braver about drawing live subjects than adults, they are not always excited about it. When I pulled out the art supplies during lunch, one child's immediate reaction was to say, "Boring!" But interestingly enough, after this child drew the first picture, he was hooked and then wanted to draw three more.
I think several things helped. I sketched with the children and was engrossed in my own work, thereby helping to place value on the activity. But I let the children choose the pace and moved onto a new animal when they were ready, even if I wasn't. I also did not demand that the children "finish" the picture unless they wanted to.
|Here you can see the plywood boards and |
large pencil case for the colored pencils better.
Here are some of the children's sketches:
|Sharks and a sting ray.|
|A butterfly extracting juice from an orange slice.|
|Turtles and Caimans.|