- Keep the session short, 5 to 10 minutes, and make sure the child leaves with a sense of success. Try to be consistent.
- Drawing is easiest when sitting at a table and chair but it can also be done standing with the paper taped to the wall, at a blackboard or lying on their stomach on the floor.
- Remember that children generally learn to draw by:
- first watching and imitating what you do with your hand while you draw the shape
- then they will copy it from the picture on the page
- next they should be able to make it independently when asked
- There are lots of activities that work on the skills you need to draw (e.g. connect the dots, mazes, puzzles, I spy, Where’s Waldo, peg boards, Lego, stencils, tracing, video games).
Multi-Sensory Pre-Printing Practice
Make the sessions fun and use lots of sensory input to help your child learn better!
- cornmeal or flour on a cookie tray
- sand or rice on a cookie tray
- pudding on a mirror on the wall or cookie sheet on a table
- finger paint
- use vibrating pens
- use smelly markers
- place sandpaper under the page
- practice on chalkboard
- practice on a slate using wet-dry-try approach, first you make the shape, then the student traces over it with a wet sponge (which leaves an outline), then use a dry sponge to trace over and then draw the shape with chalk
- draw the shapes on their back and have them point to it on a page with different shapes
- use wikki stix (available at Mastermind) to bend/manipulate to make shapes
- outline pictures with dry glue so they feel the bump and know where to stop colouring
Typical Progression for Pre-Printing
- vertical line, horizontal line, circle, cross, diagonal in both directions ( / and \ ), square, X, triangle
- after they can draw simple shapes they can start to be put together into figures (e.g. line with circle on top makes a flower)
- when the child can make all of these shapes they are ready to start printing
Kristen Easterbrook MSc. OT. Reg. (Ont.) ~ VHA Rehab Solutions A division of VHA Home HealthCare