How art can help with your child’s development

Art is a fun and interesting activity – no matter your age, discipline or expertise. Its benefits are also well known in therapy, recovery and development. Studies show that engaging in art – whether that’s getting your hands covered in clay and paint, or simply taking delight in exploring different materials – can improve physical and mental development.

But what about child development? Can art help a child’s ability to socialise and forge real connections in the world?

The answer is a resounding yes. Art plays a critical role in a child’s development. No matter what age, there are multiple benefits of creating art.

Let’s take a closer look at how art helps child development.

Early Start Australia

Art promotes creativity and self-expression

Art is a process of creativity.

And creativity and self-expression are in high demand these days. No one needs reminding that they are all important life skills – valued everywhere in the world. Art promotes creativity and self-expression by allowing young children the chance to explore the unknown.

Art also gives children the opportunity to create without boundaries to the imagination or the means through which they express themselves. This is an important process for any child to engage in. 

Creating art develops fine motor skills

The process of creating art gives the child a fun way to develop fine motor skills that become critical in engaging with the world.
Creating art involves painting, drawing, glueing, sticking and tearing. All these activities are key to developing important coordination and dexterity skills.
As the child gains control of certain tools along the way – like sticking two pieces of paper together or grasping a paintbrush or pencil, they are rewarded with satisfying results. This process allows a child to feel a sense of ownership over their creations.

Art optimises neural connections

Art optimises neural connections The Early Start Australia

Creating art is a sensory activity as much as it is a physical and mental activity. Whether that’s feeling the texture of paints between their fingers, smelling new materials for the first time, seeing new colours mixed together, or hearing the sound of scissors cutting paper – these sensory experiences kickstart the child’s synapses – linking up key neural connections in the brain. This optimisation of neural connections is how art helps child development.

Art hones problem-solving skills

Art hones problem solving skills The Early start Australia

Ask any CEO what the most desirable characteristic is in an employee and they’ll mention creative problem-solving skills. A recent study showed there was a strong link between art-making and improved problem-solving abilities in the real world. Creating art itself is a process of linking up ideas, materials, colours, and textures together in a comprehensive and intentional way. This can be a highly satisfying experience for any child – whose subconscious is learning how to create alternative solutions as they experiment with different materials.

Art improves your child’s decision-making ability

Art gives children the ability to make their own choices and learn in ways they enjoy. 

Art can assist children in putting their feelings down on paper. This independence in the creation process pushes children to overcome hurdles in their process by themselves without necessarily asking for help from a parent. 

Art also allows young children to reflect on their decisions made during the process of creating their art – what techniques or materials they used and can prove helpful in improving future choices if they aren’t happy with a previous attempt.

Art develops language and communication skills

Art develops language and communication skills Early Start Australia

Art is in many ways a means of communication. And for children who may be slow in developing confidence in speech and language, creating art can be an effective tool in overcoming these transient barriers to their communication. Scribbling and doodling on a blank page allows children the opportunity to practice their early writing and drawing skills which is vital to developing their writing skills later in life. 

Art activities also give children a relaxed, pleasurable and often private way of expressing themselves. Getting creative is also a chance to discover new skills while having fun. Children can therefore develop their own ways of communicating comfortably that can build confidence over the long term.

Art brings kids together

Art brings kids together Early Start Australia

If nothing else, art will boost a child’s ability to socialise. Creating art together is a highly interactive and often entertaining activity for children as they explore new ways of communicating with kids their own age. 

It’s also how art helps child development over the longer term. Forging connections, even if only brief or short-lived, can boost children’s confidence when interacting with others, reinforcing other positive skills like language, communication and motor skills.

Art gives your child the best early start possible

Art is a critical process in any child’s early development. Finding the right solutions along the way can be difficult. At Early Start Australia, we offer a range of early childhood intervention services, such as childrens occupational therapy, psychology, paediatric physiotherapy, and speech therapy for kids, so you and your child can move forward with confidence.

If you want to learn more about how art helps child development – or see how we can assist you in giving your child the best early start to life – just give us a call. With a local branch near you, we are ready to give you a direct assessment of your child and work on reaching your family’s goals. 

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