Craft is an activity involving skill in making things by hand, so from developing fine motor skills to supporting self-esteem, getting crafty is fantastic for your child - at any stage or age.
Why is it so important for children?
Early childhood is a crucial stage of growth and development, and at pre-school and early primary years, the things most children gravitate towards are crafts - painting, cutting, sticking, glueing, tying. All these things help with imaginary play, creative skill building and sensory play. Crafting also helps develop fine motor skills. From the pre-school years, grabbing and holding a crayon or paintbrush develops the muscles that are needed in a few years time, for skills such as buttoning their coat, tying their shoelaces, holding a pencil to write, and so much more. Craft activities have been shown to help promote the use of right and left brain functioning, to relax and reward the brain, and to help maintain cognitive functioning such as multiple mental abilities, including learning, thinking, reasoning, remembering, problem-solving, decision making, and attention.
5 Benefits of crafts for kids
- Crafting improves children's coordination and fine motor skills.
Crafts usually require kids to use both hands in a particular manner, which can help them develop fine motor skills and bilateral coordination. For instance, cutting with scissors or even just ripping a piece of paper, can help them develop quicker and become more skilled in other daily activities such as tying their shoes, dressing, using kitchenware, etc.
- Crafting helps children express themselves.
Kids are visual and their brains are like sponges, absorbing new information every day. Whether they're outgoing or naturally shy, crafts can support children to express themselves visually. When children are creating, it's a safe environment that they can control and learn in any way they want by using any materials they like. Parents and grandparents are encouraged to support their kids with craft activities, and watch what they create, or do some craft with them. You may be surprised how well you are able to figure out what's going on for them, if they're unable to express in words.
- Crafting helps kids be more creative and productive.
Children's imaginations are limitless and without boundaries, and crafts are a great way for them to turn that limitless imagination into something productive and fun. There are so many materials, colours, shapes, and activities they can choose, which allows children to explore various options and pick those that they find the most enjoyable. Have you discovered Diamond Dotz yet? You can start with the kits, or you can go straight to freestyle Diamond Dotz.
- Crafting helps kids develop writing skills.
Young kids usually begin using pens by scribbling random things and the more they scribble, the better they get at controlling the pen and their movements across the paper. So, as they learn to better control their own movements, they're also learning how to create various shapes, which eventually leads to creating letters. So the more they scribble, the closer they're getting to mastering writing. When you give your child or grandchild colourful pens and markers and crayons which vary in weight and size, they'll find scribbling experimental and fun!
- Crafting helps kids socialise.
Give a kid some wool, glue, scissors, old cereal boxes and yogurt containers, paints, sheets of felt and colour paper, and watch what they create. When you observe children together (like in a pre-school or early primary school craft class setting) you'll often see them create incredible works, and observe children working together and sharing resources. Crafting removes gender, race, age and background, because when it comes to creativity, they just need a space to craft, some materials, and their imagination.
So, the 21st century where we're so busy, and many parents can easily hand a kid an ipad or phone to keep their kids entertained and occupied, it's important we remember to slow down, dedicate time to getting creative with crafts, and allow your kids to express themselves and use their imagination. Plus, you might have fund getting crafty with them!
Scholastic, Tiny Beans