I remember as a child the excitement around a new box of crayons and a coloring book! It was something I always enjoyed doing, and have many fond memories of coloring with my sister and my Mom on our living room floor! With technology and digital coloring it seems that crayons and paper coloring are becoming a thing of the past – but research continues to support the benefits of pencil (or crayon!) to paper, as well as arts and crafts!
So what exactly does coloring help your child to practice? Here are just a few!
Bilateral Coordination– Coloring, cutting and gluing all require your child to use both of their hands together. This is an important pre-cursor to learning to write, tie their shoes and manage clothing fasteners with both hands!
Fine Motor Coordination– Learning to control fine motor movements to draw shapes, color within the lines and cut out patterns is emphasized when coloring and completing age appropriate crafts. These are also precursory skills to dressing, eating and school related activities.
Self Regulation– The patience and time needed to completely color a page or assemble your art project are great ways to learn to pace your actions and regulate your body! Have you read about recent trends in adults using coloring to reduce stress? Here is short read on just that: Coloring Isn’t Just for Kids!
Self-Esteem– Creating your own piece of art can be a great emotional boost for our children as well. The impression left on a child as you express your delight when they present you with a gift of their own creation helps to build confidence. The satisfaction of a completed project is also a wonderful way to embrace creativity and self-esteem!
So spend some time this week with your child coloring, creating and sharing the experience – you will both benefit from this worthwhile activity!
To help you along, follow this link to some great coloring pages: 90 Free Coloring Pages
Also, follow us on Pinterest for fine motor activities our Occupational Therapists are constantly adding to as a resource for you!
To learn more about motor skills and developmental expectations see our section on Occupational Therapy and motor development! And as always, if you have any concerns about your child’s development call us at 810-991-1211 for a free consultation!