Doodling with crayons is very effective and an amazing medium of Art Based Therapy. In this blog I have mentioned about doodling activities for children. Art Based Therapy works beautifully for any age group whether in groups or individually. Visual arts is one of the mediums of Art Based Therapy. In visual arts one can use wet colours and dry colours. Over here I am mentioning about dry colours, i.e. crayons. There are lots of benefits of using crayons with children.
Advantages of Doodling
Usually when we use the term Doodling it is considered as an activity in which one wastes time. Also we often relate doodling in notebooks or textbooks while we are studying or listening to someone.
But Doodling when done in the form of art or consciously then it has lot of benefits. One can do doodling with a fine pen or crayons. Usually with children crayons are advisable. I often do doodling as an ice breaker activity, bonding activity or as an actual activity. I have had many instances where in parents have seen that their children have become more imaginative. Others have said that it’s a good way to keep their child involved in a constructive manner.
In this blog I have mentioned about doodling with crayons. Crayons are a very good medium while doing Art Based Practice.
Doodling with children
So how do I go about doodling with children? I go depending on the age group, activity and the purpose. In this article I am writing some of the ways in which one can doodle.
Dance with crayon
• Play the music, tell the child to be ready with two of his favorite colours of crayons
• Tell him that on the start of music you can take first crayon and move it on this page on the beat of the music
• Give the child a nice A4 sheet paper so there is enough space to move the crayon
• Now when the child is doodling observe if the child is moving the crayon on the pace of music
• Simultaneously even you can pick up a crayon and do the activity on other sheet
• At the end of one minute of the music tell the child now continue the activity with other crayon
• Let him dance with crayon the way he wants. This activity can be done in group or individually
• It’s one of the best forms of mindfulness
Let’s dance together
• This activity is similar to the first one. But the difference here is that both the partners have to do the activity on the same sheet with two different colours
• Over here partner can be mother and child, siblings. Since I am a child and parent counselor I have seen this activity brings lots of smiles on the faces of those who come for sessions
• Usually such activities are not done at home hence they find very interesting. Example both mother and child are given a crayon. On the beat of music they are asked to fill the page with doodle
• After doodling I ask them to find some patterns in between those doodles. So they start using their imagination and come with many forms
• It’s one of the techniques to inculcate bonding between both the mother and the child or siblings. If done in group it can act as an ice breaker between two children
Make a character using doodling
• This activity is generally used with another art form Story. We will see more articles on stories in future blogs. But for those who are already into storytelling you can try using this
• This is a follow up activity after narrating the story. Children are given papers along with crayons and asked to draw their favorite character or favorite scene from the story in the form of doodles. It works in a fantastic way as one gets an opportunity to imagine, be creative without worrying about the outcome
• I really get amazed when children are given this activity. There is lot of happiness seen on the child’s face
• When we do this in group children can share their doodles with rest of the group and discuss. It gives them a sense of pride as even who can’t draw or have not enjoyed drawing feel accomplished
Make your own story
• This activity is for doodling in a group. It is used for family or any other group
• All the members must hold crayon in their hand and there is a common paper for all. The first member doodles the character on the blank paper and passes the paper to the second one. Then the second member will doodle based on the pattern which is already there on the paper
• The member will just say the name of the pattern/character that is doodled. After two or three rounds everybody keeps their crayons aside
• Now comes the narration part. Each member tells their version of story based on the doodles that are drawn on the paper.
• With this activity one can express along with imagination. Also it’s an excellent form of bonding and rejuvenation
• Try it with your family and please let me know how you feel
Other forms of Doodling
All the above are example of doodling with crayons. There are many other ways of doing it. Many a times children themselves find some innovative way once they understand what doodling is all about. The best part of doodling is we don’t have to judge what the child has drawn hence the confidence increases.
I have given instances keeping my sessions in mind. However one can do doodling as a game or an activity at home too. It’s not necessarily that one has to do doodling only when problem arises. It can be simply done as a weekend activity or an transitional activity before studies. Even teachers can do this activity before starting a new chapter.
Doodling with crayons has following benefits
• Work on imagination
• Be more creative
• Increase confidence
When you give doodling activity one should take care of the following
1) Music should be instrumental
2) Always let the children narrate about what have they doodled
3) Give good quality colours, (Faber castell) pastel colors are my preference
4) A doodle is never right or wrong.
5) Doodling should not be discouraged
Have you tried doodling with crayon. If yes please share your experience.