Decode Your Child’s Coloring Pages
Children like to give color, and their work is a reflection of their inner world. Most kids don’t think about or censor their artwork. For the past 40 years, I’ve used children’s Colouring Pages as an important part of my pediatric practice. At each well-child visit beginning at 4 or 5 5 years of age, our nurse asks the child to “give color a picture of your loved ones doing something.” To simplify the process, each exam room is equipped with blank white newspaper on a clipboard with a african american felt pen.
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The family colouring helps me study development at confirmed moment in time, and it could word of advice me off to potential problems. An individual coloring is a snapshot of any child’s viewpoint — of her role in the family, her relationship to other family, and her self-esteem. It also may show advantages in the kid and the family that are important to recognize and validate. It can indicate cultural habits that provide me a much better understanding of some actions or beliefs. I always ask the parents for his or her impression of the colouring web page, because our talk can produce even more information that may well not come up otherwise.
A huge caveat here: Most of us want to find concealed meanings in Color Pages, but watch out for overinterpreting. It’s not smart to read too much into your child’s sketches. Instead, utilize them as an possibility to talk with your child about what he or she has drawn. Then ask questions about them to improve communication between you. Do your best to avoid providing too many of your own impressions. I purposely keep carefully the chat very open-ended: “Tell me about your color. Who are the people in the picture? What are they doing?” For examples of what you might be looking for with your personal children, check out my examination of these kids’ Coloring Internet pages.
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This first picture is a great example of how artwork can be considered a springboard for dialogue. It was attracted by a patient of mine when she was 11. She experienced lived by themselves with her mom since beginning and she’s no siblings. On the surface, her physical health, schoolwork, and social development were just fine. But she made friends slowly but surely and she was unusually wary of leaving her mom to go to friends’ homes. She preferred to have friends come to her house and play while her mother was nearby. I had been worried that their close bond got truly in the way of her learning how to separate from her mommy, which really is a necessary part of development.
I hadn’t had the opportunity to get this point across at past office sessions. But with this coloring, I had fashioned an opening. Just how they were located so closely together, and the fact that a short string connected the mother and daughter, stood out to me. AS I asked Mother, “What do you think about this picture?” she primarily talked proudly about her daughter’s colouring skills. But she accepted that she could see what I’d been striving to state about their romance. We were able to talk about it, and she kept the office motivated to help her girl (and herself ) discover ways to divide psychologically while preserving their adoring and close relationship.
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Coloring skills often get started to tell a tale in kindergarten. Although kids at this age have a tendency to use simple stay figures, you will often pick things up from facial expressions, where members of the family are placed, and what they’re doing. This second picture, attracted with a 5-year-old girl, can be an example of that. She drew her mother on the much left, followed by the family dog, her dad, herself, and her 8-year-old sibling. The lady drew herself as bigger than her parents — this typically demonstrates good self-esteem. It’s worthwhile noting that she located herself between her daddy and brother: When children are between 4 and 6 years old, they create a sense of these gender identity. As a part of this normal developmental process, girls often get in physical form and emotionally nearer to their dad (kids this age have a tendency to get nearer to their mother), and the emotions are temporary.