I am not a very creative or art-centered person, but I have always wanted to cultivate creativity in my kids and allow for delight-directed homeschool art in our home. I guess it is because I don’t feel confident in teaching art and I lack a creative side myself.
I was taught and encouraged to love learning in general and to follow my interests as a child and that has given me the desire to encourage the same in my children. Even when, and perhaps especially when, I am not very interested in the same things as my kids: like art or crafts.
My mom never home educated most of us kids or any of us for all of our schooling. I attended public, then private, and then homeschool but my mom seemed to have a natural knack for teaching us to our strengths.
For me, that meant she strongly encouraged my writing, desire for learning through reading any/everything I could get my hands on, and my love for organizing even though she felt lacking in all of those things. I hope to glean from her wisdom and recognize my child(ren)’s strengths and interests.
Our Favorite Art Supplies
Mike’s Inspiration Station – Volumes 1-6Mike’s Inspiration Station – Volumes 7-12See The Light ART CLASS (Volumes 1-9; 36 lessons)Bob Ross: The Joy of Painting – Nine 1-Hour Instructional Guides 10 DVD Gift SetALEX Toys Artist Studio Portable Art SetArt 101 142-Piece Wood Art Set
How To Cultivate Creativity In Kids
- Surround them with artists, creativity, and art. Whether via visiting art museums, checking out books on art from the library, studying artists, or watching Bob Ross on Amazon Prime… provide them exposure to artists, creativity, and art. If you are artistic and creative, then include them in your ventures, let them see you in the middle of the beautiful mess, and experience the satisfaction of a completed project. For at-home instruction, we love Mike’s Inspiration Station, See the Light, and Bob Ross. There are so many craft activities on the web to use as a starting point.
- Provide them with art supplies and tools. Starting at preschool/toddler age, I give my children blank paper and colored pencils and tell them to draw for me. As they reach developmental milestones, add in various mediums to your home’s collection of art and craft supplies. We prefer colored pencils over crayons since they hold up better for teething babies and curious toddlers. Water paint, oil and chalk pastels, markers, scissors, glue, large beads and string, and the list goes on. There are endless amounts of items that can be brought into your home for your children to get creative with. The more hands-on, the better.
- Don’t force it, just allow it. Not all children are in love with art and crafts. That’s okay. The whole point is to allow for their personal creativity and interests to be strengthened, so if art is not their thing do not stress. Just keep the supplies in the home and allow them to be creative if the desire strikes. Encourage them to try various styles of art and crafts and they may finally find one they enjoy. After all, writing is painting pictures and creating a mood with words, great books are masterpieces, and making a space well organized is a form of art so I am an Artist in my own right, it is just not what others typical identify as art.
- Relax, every mess can be cleaned up. I know that us homeschool moms are quite constantly trying to keep up with housework. The thought of letting our kids make a huge mess can seem overwhelming, but I have (slowly) learned that it’s okay to allow a mess for an hour or two. But be sure to make cleaning up a team effort! Living, working, and learning together is one of the beautiful results of homeschooling our children. Teach them how to have fun and how to clean up after themselves. That is what ‘real life’ consists of. It also helps to teach them to ask permission before taking out the art and crafts supplies. As the parent, it is also okay to say ‘no’ when you need to. Just make sure they know a ‘yes’ will happen a few times a week.
Best Homeschool Backpack Ideas
Lightweight Canvas Backpack for Women, Teens and Kids (Elephant Pink Small V2)Everest Basic Backpack, Emerald Green, One SizePacon Tru-Ray Construction Paper, 9-Inches by 12-Inches, 50-Count, Assorted (103031)Crayola Ultra-Clean Washable Markers, Broad Line, 40-CountPrismacolor 3599TN Premier Colored Pencils, Soft Core, 72-CountPlaid Enterprises, Inc. 12679E Plaid Chalkboard (8-1/2 by 10-1/2-Inch), 12679
How We Do Delight-Directed Homeschool Art | Why Pack A Homeschool Backpack
Besides the ideas offered above, one thing we recently did was to buy each of our children a backpack and fill it with all kinds of art and craft supplies.
This keeps their supplies and creations separate from their siblings, important in a large family. It also keeps the supplies contained and organized, important to this type-a mom!
They can grab their backpacks from their bedrooms, bring them into the kitchen or living room, get messy creative for a while, then put everything back into their backpacks, and put them away in their bedrooms. It has been a great way to cut down on the mess and the sibling fighting over supplies.
It also works well for when you need to leave the house. Grab their backpacks and let them do some ‘road-schooling’ for the day.
Things to put in the backpacks:
- a pack of blank printer paper
- construction paper
- colored pencils
- glue sticks
- coloring book
- chalk and/or oil pastels
- stationary (letter writing material & envelopes)
- folder for saving their projects
- mini whiteboard or chalkboard with dry erase markers or chalk
- a small container with a Lego set for building on the go – Tip: use an Altoids tin for a mini set or a pencil box for a medium set, hot glue a small Lego base plate inside the lid to be used with the bricks!
Like I said, the ideas are really quite endless. I hope this encourages you to cultivate creativity and allow for delight-directed homeschool art in your home!