How to talk to your kids about their art...

Updated: Apr 8, 2019

Have you ever looked at your child's drawing and said something like, "Great mountain!" only to be told it's a house? I think we are all guilty of this at some point or another. As a high school art teacher I cannot tell you how many times I have misidentified an object in a child's work of art. It's somehow in our deepest instincts to identify objects that we see. The problem happens when we identify an object that our child did not see. This creates a feeling in our child that they didn't do it right and could slowly erode away at their artistic confidence.

It is so important that we put a filter on our need to identify objects. When we mislabel something children oftentimes accept our label because they want to please us and "get it right." You can validate your child's efforts and create a confident artist if you allow them to tell you what they drew. So how do you do this?

When it comes to art we can learn the most about our children and what they drew with one simple open-ended statement. Tell me about your drawing. This gives them the opportunity to tell you what they want to tell you without you influencing their answer. Here is an example: