Healthcare professionals, especially those in the psychosocial fields, use art as one of the most instrumental therapies to communicate with one’s thoughts. It is also for this reason that child developmental psychologists recommend art sets to kids as a means to develop their full cognitive potential. Here, we have listed the 10 best art sets and drawing kits that your kids can use to express themselves, build self-confidence, and provide an avenue for them to communicate their thoughts.
Criteria Used to Evaluate The Best Art Sets for Kids
Our team searched the internet and reviewed a plethora of art sets. After exhaustive research, they generated the 10 best art sets for 2017. We based this list on ages, functionality and how well built the kits are. Some of the sets on the list are perfect for children just old enough to hold a crayon. Other sets are for slightly older kids who are exploring new color mediums and may want to take their kit on the road. Then there are the truly adventurous, the ones who need the tools to capture the illusive images in their thoughts. Then there are the ones who may need some encouragement to develop artistic skills. That’s why our researchers picked more than just crayon sets. They found kits that work with children to encourage exploration, experimentation and cognitive development.
Kits like the Deluxe Art Set, Stamp-a-Scene Stamp Pad and the Ultimate Art Case with Easel are great starter kits. These kits are specifically designed for the average 3-year-old in mind. That means large pieces, washable dyes and bright colors. There’s not too many materials to lose and the colors are non-toxic so parents don’t have to worry about them eating the paint.
As kids get a little older, they can upgrade to larger kits. The Artistic Studio Colossal Art Set, Artistic Set and the 142-Piece Wood Art Set are kits that children already enrolled in school can enjoy. They can learn responsibility because these kits are larger and have the potential to lose pieces if they don’t practice being tidy.
Children who don’t like to draw may enjoy the Stamp Pad, Large Drawing Stencils Set or the Spirograph Design Set. These are not just kits with lots of random colored pencils and paints. The stamp set is great for kids to decorate their notebooks and other personal belongings.
They can also decorate their notes that they give to their friends and family. The stencil set and the Spirograph provides kids with a chance to get creative by making patterns and tracing different designs together. These kits are perfect for children who may struggle with traditional art while encouraging them to learn.
What Determined The Top Art Supplies for Kids in Our List
We’re not really looking to turn your child into a Da Vinci, Rembrandt, or even Picasso. But we do recognize the value of and art kit in your child’s development. That’s why we embarked on this quest to find out the top art supplies especially for kids.
First, since all art supplies are almost essentially the same, we had to look at the safety of the materials used in the pigments. As much as possible, we would want the crayons, coloring pens and pencils, and other coloring materials to be free from harmful chemicals. This is especially true for very young kids as they may not yet have a firm grasp of what’s poisonous and what’s safe. So, if the pigment is made of food-grade, FDA-approved materials, then we’d definitely include that in our list. Also part of safety is the overall design of the art kit. In many ways, coloring pens should be blunt-ended. However, even blunted objects can be quite dangerous especially when struck in delicate organs of children like the eyes.
Many drawing kits come in small pieces which can get lost if they don’t have a system of organization. As such the ease of organization and the convenience of storage have also been considered. This is very important especially for kids who are just learning the concept of organizing things. Otherwise, you’d have to contend with missing art kit elements or components. The organizer must not only be functional but also aesthetically pleasing so your kid will be more motivated to use it.
We then read feedbacks and comments as well as consumer reviews about these art supplies for kids. We had to be certain that our initial evaluation roughly corresponds to how other people look at these kiddie products. Of course, we don’t expect the reviews to be laden with developmental benefits for kids. However, if parents love it, then there’s no point in arguing, right?
Hence, this is how we arrived at the ten best art sets for kids you can give this Christmas or on any other special occasion. You can also give them for no reason except to ensure your child’s creativity and imagination flies through the roof.
Benefits of Drawing and Coloring for Kids’ Development
Coloring is one of the simplest yet most beneficial activity that kids can engage in to develop their cognitive and psychomotor skills. Kids also love to draw before adding color to their drawings. Child developmental psychologists say that this could very well lead to a happier and healthier life in adolescence as well as into adulthood. Here are some of the well-known benefits of drawing and coloring for kids.
- Drawing and coloring enhances their psychomotor skills particularly their hand-eye coordination and spatial awareness. They need to be able to manipulate the drawing instruments and coloring tools to create more fantastic masterpiece.
- Doodling and coloring helps stimulate imagination and creativity especially in freehand drawings. These give children the opportunity work out what they have in mind and then use drawing as the medium for expressing their ideas.
- It can contribute to handwriting ability. Mastering the art of holding a coloring instrument will help train the hands to move with each stroke. This can lead to better handwriting which can help facilitate improved written communication.
- Helps enhance the awareness, recognition, and differentiation of colors. This is especially true in instilling the concept of primary, secondary, and tertiary colors. This can also become the foundation for discerning subtle color combinations which can be very useful in adult life.
- Helps improve the child’s self-confidence and self-esteem. Being able to create something can help a child’s sense of accomplishment. This can increase their pride in themselves and slowly build confidence in their abilities.
The Bottom Line
Drawing and coloring are very useful in children’s development. With the top ten art sets for kids, we’re certain you’ll be in a much better position to help facilitate the growth and development of your own kid.
Frequently Asked Questions
Q: How do I encourage my child to draw?
A: Some kids need a little encouragement when it comes to drawing. At times, regular crayons and markers are just too boring. It is recommended that parents work with their children to try something new. Use wet chalk, or black fine liners, water pencils (draw the design first then have them paint).
Q: Are there other things kids can draw on besides in the usual paper or coloring book?
A: Yes, set up dramatic play that interests them. For example, set up a pretend shop that needs a new sign. Or make paper airplanes that they can color on. The idea is that the activity is relatable to what they love best in order to encourage coloring and drawing.
Q: If I feel like I have terrible art skills, should I enroll my 3-year-old in art class? Is it too early?
A: It is a bit too early to send a 3-year-old to art class. Don’t try so hard to teach a tiny kid how to draw the perfect elephant. At that age, it’s all about having fun and learning how to enjoy drawing and expressing yourself. If both parent and child are terrible artists, that’s O.K. Just remember, it’s about having fun and exploring. When they are a little older and develop a love of drawing, enroll them in art class to enhance their talents.
Q: Are there different drawing stages kids go through?
A: There are four stages of drawing and writing that kids go through. The earliest stage starts as young as 15 months old to 2 ½ years old. That is the random scribbling stage. Where you’ll have no idea what they’re trying to draw, but that’s fine. They’re exploring different colors and practicing fine motor skills. Between the ages of 2 and 3 years old, they go through the controlled scribbling stage. That’s where their art starts to make a little more sense. To learn more about the different stages, check out this article.
Q: What are the healthy ways to advance kids early interests in art?
A: Don’t buy them complicated 3D animation software, they’ll learn to hate you. And don’t encourage kids by telling them they are the best and that one day they’ll become the greatest artist in the world. That will fill their heads with dreams of grandeur and fame. And resist the urge to judge your kids paintings. Parents are not a good judge of art. What is important is the understanding that it doesn’t matter how good the art is. At a young age, the most important lesson is the love of art. Skill will come in time if the passion and love is there.
Q: Should parents draw something for their kids to copy?
A: Surprisingly no. At a young age, children need to learn the love of drawing. When a child is shown how to draw then they are learning to copy drawings. If a child is wanting to draw something they see on a table, then use your finger to outline the object. This teaches kids to draw in the air by pointing their finger and outlining the object. Resist the urge to draw on their paper and instead help them learn by studying the thing or animal instead.
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