The cute turtle your child painted purple in pottery class is a symbol of more than one accomplishment. Pottery class provides your family with more than just new artwork for the home. It can enrich your children’s lives in ways ranging from boosting their self-esteem to improving their motor skills.
The Soothing Qualities of Clay
Clay can captivate a child’s interest for hours, and it has a calming effect. If you visit pottery classes for children, you may notice a trend. They tend to be quiet because everyone is too busy creating a work of art. Even children who are considered hyperactive can become fascinated by clay and focus on a single masterpiece. The soothing qualities of the medium keep them engaged while their imagination takes over.
When your child picked out purple paint for the turtle instead of the traditional green color, creativity was behind the decision. You are not likely to find a purple turtle in your local pond, but pottery gives children the ability to think beyond the conventional norms. Clay is easy to handle for small fingers, and it is a forgiving art form. Children quickly learn their mistakes can be rolled back into a ball, so they can start over. Their focused faces during class reveal their creativity is being fully engaged as they shape dinosaurs, create bowls or make birds.
Improving Motor Skills
Pottery class can improve children’s motor skills by giving them the chance to engage their arm and hand muscles. As they learn how to manipulate the clay, they will discover that their hands can be powerful tools. Meanwhile, their fine motor skills are getting better because working with clay requires hand-eye coordination.
There is another benefit tied to motor skills parents may notice, but it is likely to occur outside of pottery class. Working with clay can help improve penmanship. The hand-eye coordination skills your children pick up in pottery class can transfer to their schoolwork with more legible writing.
Improving Sensory Development
If you walk into a pottery class for children, your senses will not be overwhelmed, but they will get gentle stimulation which is perfect for sensory development. A pottery class engages the sense of smell with clay and paint, the sense of sight with artwork and the sense of touch with clay. A class gives children the chance to absorb things at their own pace. Children create art based on their development stages, and the safe environment of a pottery class lets them grow without restrictions.
The beaming smile on a child’s face after creating a vase in pottery class is impossible to ignore. The vase may be lopsided and only painted on one side, but the child has accomplished something unique and is proud of it. Pottery class can improve self-esteem because children have control over their projects and can quickly see results.
Perfection is not the goal of pottery class. Creation is the goal, and it does not matter how many steps it takes to achieve it. Clay is easy to handle and more forgiving than other art forms. It does not run off the page like watercolors or require sticky glue to work. Children quickly realize they can mess up their projects and keep going. Their self-esteem grows as they realize they can create something fun with just their hands.
Learning to Solve Problems in a Safe Setting
There are no grades or trophies in pottery class. It is a safe setting for children who want to learn without pressure. It is also a perfect environment to learn how to solve problems without parental interference. Are their clay T-rexes starting to dry out? They will learn all they need is some water. Do their bowls need stronger handles? They will learn how to add more clay to their masterpiece. Both of these examples require children to experiment and solve problems by trying new things.
Pottery class can provide your children with multiple benefits. It is the type of experience that leaves a lasting impression on their lives, and it helps their development without sacrificing fun. If you look beyond the artwork from class filling your home, you will see happier, stronger and more creative children smiling back at you.