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Little Hands, BIG ART!

It’s June and that means that Arty Pants is back at WMA. What is Arty Pants, you ask? Arty Pants is a quarterly class for toddlers (18 months to 4 years old) and their guardian that encourages exploration, play, and creativity. We begin each class with freestyle scribbling, sometimes with a prompt but usually it’s anything goes. Then we gather together to read a book that will inspire the artworks we create together. Over the four series class we work with different mediums and tools in order to create beautiful MESSterpieces!

But why would we subject ourselves to the absolute chaos that comes from putting toddlers and glue…or paint in the same room? Because it’s good for them! According to Chicago’s North Shore Pediatric Therapy Center, arts and crafts can help toddlers develop bilateral coordination, fine motor coordination, and self-regulation. Art is also a self-esteem builder and when creating together, art can help you bond with your little one. And it’s just plain fun!

What type of art activities are appropriate for toddlers? We have found that toddlers can accomplish more than one might initially think. With supervision, it’s good to let them explore, play, and make a mess! Just make sure that you use nontoxic materials and tools that are safe and age appropriate. With guidance, my Arty Pants students have drawn animals, created a torn paper landscape, painted beautiful mural style art works, built interactive noise makers, and more! This article from Hands On As We Grow suggests 30 great art activities to try with your toddler if you are looking for some inspiration. Just remember, it’s okay to make messes. Let them explore and express themselves in a safe, fun way!

So, are you ready to create a MESSterpiece with your toddler? If you’re not quite prepared to open your home up to the chaos, sign up for September’s Arty Pants class and let us clean up the mess! Learn more here: https://www.wiregrassmuseum.org/arty-pants-on-toddler-tuesdays/