Parents and caregivers are well aware that older children love to express themselves visually, but the cognitive and social benefits of creative arts are important for infants and toddlers as well.
Here are some of the benefits that art gives to infants and toddlers:
Development of motor skills
Creative arts help toddlers develop fine and gross motor skills through activities like coloring with a crayon and scribbling with sidewalk chalk outdoors. Art also helps children to develop hand-eye coordination, which will help your toddler with many activities as they grow.
For infants, creative arts will help them develop motor skills even if they cannot physically draw and paint. Interacting with sensory art materials such as sponges, finger paints, and large crayons helps them to develop fine and gross motor skills as well.
Cognitive development and imagination
According to Americans for the Arts, creative arts strengthen skills like problem-solving skills and critical thinking. Creative art projects involve the imagination. Arts projects encourage a child to find a way to take the idea they have in their mind and express it artistically, whether it’s through finger paints, a torn paper collage, stamps made from shapes cut from a potato, or drawing.
Social Emotional Learning (SEL)
Creative art for infants and toddlers involves many opportunities for social and emotional learning. Young children can express themselves through art in a period when their language skills may not be adequate. At My Place, we provide our artists an outlet for self-expression and creativity. My Place students can communicate their emotions through colors and media while depicting their experiences. Our educators engage students in conversation by asking theme-based open-ended questions.