Decode Your Child’s Coloring Pages
Children want to give color, and their work is a representation of their internal world. Most kids don’t think about or censor their artwork. For days gone by 40 years, I’ve used children’s Colouring Pages as an important part of my pediatric practice. At each well-child visit start at four or five 5 years of age, our nurse asks the kid to “give color an image of your loved ones doing something.” To simplify the procedure, each exam room is equipped with blank white newspaper over a clipboard with a dark colored felt pen.
The family coloring helps me survey development at a given moment in time, and it could word of advice me off to potential problems. A single coloring is a snapshot of a child’s point of view — of her role in the family, her romantic relationship to other family members, and her self-esteem. It also may show talents in the kid and the family that are important to identify and validate. It can indicate cultural habits that give me a better understanding of some actions or beliefs. I always ask the parents because of their impression of the coloring page, because our conversation can produce even more information that might not come up in any other case.
An enormous caveat here: Most of us want to find concealed meanings in Coloring Pages, but watch out for overinterpreting. It’s not smart to read too much into your child’s sketches. Instead, use them as an opportunity to talk with your son or daughter about what he or she has drawn. Then ask questions about them to improve communication between you. Do your best to avoid giving too many of your own impressions. I purposely keep the talk very open-ended: “Tell me about your color. Who are the people in the picture? What are they doing?” For examples of what you may be looking for with your own children, check out my research of these kids’ Coloring Pages.
This first picture is a great exemplory case of how artwork can be a springboard for dialogue. It was attracted by a patient of mine when she was 11. She possessed lived by itself with her mother since beginning and she has no siblings. On the top, her physical health, schoolwork, and communal development were just fine. But she made friends slowly but surely and she was unusually cautious about leaving her mom to visit friends’ houses. She preferred to own friends come to her house and play while her mother was nearby. I got concerned that their close relationship got in the way of her learning how to split up from her mother, which is a necessary part of development.
I hadn’t been able to understand this point across at past office visits. But with this coloring, I had formed an opening. Just how they were placed so closely alongside one another, and the fact that a brief string connected the mother and little girl, stood out to me. WHILE I asked Mother, “What do you consider concerning this picture?” she initially talked happily about her daughter’s colouring skills. But she accepted that she could see what I’d been seeking to say about their romance. We were able to discuss it, and she remaining the office encouraged to help her girl (and herself ) discover ways to divide psychologically while keeping their loving and close marriage.
Color skills often begin to tell a story in kindergarten. Although kids at this age tend to use simple stick figures, you will often opt for things up from facial expressions, where members of the family are placed, and what they’re doing. This second picture, drawn by way of a 5-year-old girl, is an example of that. She drew her mom on the considerably left, accompanied by the family dog, her father, herself, and her 8-year-old brother. The lady drew herself as larger than her parents — this typically displays good self-esteem. It’s worth noting that she located herself between her father and sibling: When children are between 4 and 6 years old, they create a sense with their gender identity. As part of this normal developmental process, girls often get bodily and emotionally closer to their dad (males this age have a tendency to get nearer to their mom), and the thoughts are temporary.