Toddlers are great at actively exploring every drawing tool within their reach. Often, after a quick grab that tool promptly pops into their mouth and is given a good chew. It then becomes a near impossible task to keep those markers, crayons, or pens out of a young one’s mouth. Recently, a newly turned-toddler that we know and love over here at Nurtured Spaces, would instantly bite the tip off the marker…every…single…time, no matter what type of teaching, modeling, or boundary setting was made. After having neighbors report that the child in the driveway had a mouth full of chalk… After spending evenings brushing wax crayons out of her teeth… it became a real necessity to find a drawing tool she couldn’t eat, even when she tried.
At Nurtured Spaces, we believe inviting young children to be creative by providing a select few drawing tools is key to successful engagement. In our desperation to find a tool that couldn’t be eaten, we found that small, chubby, child-sized wooden colored pencils did the trick. The Crayola Write Start Colored Pencils or Ikea’s MALA Colored Pencils, are lovely wooden pencils that have become a staple for the youngest artists near and dear to our hearts. Granted, they may not be as satisfying as a good chew on some oil pastels, but they work for making marks and expressing oneself on paper. Now, at almost two, our little Nurtured Spaces artist has moved on to using markers, crayons, and pens without first tasting them. If you have an emerging artist that likes the taste of drawing tools, give these pencils a try!
Fun Tip from Nurtured Spaces
Try keeping those fun wooden pencils in a zip pencil case next to a few sheets of paper. Watch as the magic of drawing invites your little one to begin.
Nurtured Spaces spends quite a bit of time these days at www.littleloftstudios.com in Portland, OR. Come visit and play during Open Studio with Leah every Friday morning at 10-12p. We never tire of sharing all the things young artists need to foster creative play with mark making tools.