In my experience as an elementary art teacher, lousy coloring after
kindergarten often can be blamed on lack of effort, especially if the
expectations have been modeled and taught. Of course, there are those
students with poor motor skills that need therapy and practice. For some
reason some students try to get by with as little effort as possible and
when you tell them it needs more work, miraculously they know what would
make the art work better, and it gets done. My question is why not do it
well the first time? I just don't know. One theory I have is that their
hands get tired because sometimes parts of the work will look great, then
towards the end it gets sloppy. So I recommend a hand break on projects
with lots of coloring or filling in with pattern. Also, I find students'
attention spans are very, very short. Children do seem to have problems
coloring neatly with colored pencils, I usually have to teach and demo that
often. I find that in order to get neat work I have to say exactly what I
expect every time. You'd think the expectation of neatness would be a
given, but it is not. Of course, you have those that really take pride in
their work, they know good work takes effort.
----- Original Message -----
From: "Maggie White" <email@example.com>
To: "ArtsEdNet Talk" <firstname.lastname@example.org>
Sent: Saturday, December 06, 2003 9:33 PM
Subject: lousy coloring skills?!
> One of the things that has amazed me is how poorly the students color
> with colored pencils, crayons, and oil pastels. They just scribble the
> color on in different directions, using long strokes which make the
> color streaky, making the colors look pastel, not pressing down to get a
> richer color without all the "holes" of white paper showing through.
> And, *gasp*, they go outside the lines. They are often resistant to my
> demos showing how to fill in their shapes with solid color.