My daughter is developmentally delayed and autistic, which is very sad, yet at the same time there are many joys. She loves coloring, even as a teenager she has a very large box of coloring books of many types. She loves crayons, especially the new scented crayons; these are crayons that leave behind a scent after you color with them. They have some really good scents such as roses and linen, but most of them smell, well yucky, to me. They have scents such as dirty sneakers, wet dog, and other unusual scents.
The simple act of coloring is the beginning of gaining tinting knowledge with personal experiences of school day memories and trial and error. As you follow suggestions for cool and warm colors one begins to understand how colors offer contrast or compliment each other. The emotional side benefits of tranquility and immediate rewards encourage learning.
Children are fascinated by colors. Since they are relatively new to this world, and are exceedingly curious and perceptive, they consider each new hue and shade to be exquisite and exceptional, unlike us, who have learned to take all the colors in the world for granted, and dont even look twice at any new shade as such, believing it to be just another part of the surrounding environment.
My older daughter continued to draw; she especially drew mandalas and other geometric types of pictures. I was proud of her endeavors for they were truly beautiful. Years passed and any thought of coloring was far from my mind, then after my third daughter was born, coloring resurfaced. I was still too deeply entrenched in the line between childhood and adulthood that I resisted the draw of the crayons.
Kids, however, witness and perceive everything, and are always eager to let their knowledge flow to others through various means, verbal and non-verbal. While the verbal means are also important, the non-verbal ones are much more fun-oriented. These include various kinds of coloring books and, talking about the new generation, free printable coloring pages from the internet.
Take for example a coloring page that has a number one, along with a giraffe that is reminiscent of a number one in its shape. Your child will not only have fun coloring the number and animal, but their lesson will also include writing the number one and being introduced to a giraffe.
The first book we purchased had 39 pictures of mandala drawings. A small box of basic coloring pencils started our adventure. We worked with the primary colors of red, orange, blue, green, violet. black, white, and a few other tints which were in the small box. The initial starting stage began with the techniques of our elementary school years. The instructions included the color wheel which we started paying attention to after getting bored with the basic colors.
Coloring is a natural childhood joy. You see pure bliss on a childs face when given a new coloring book and especially a new box of crayons. Did you ever notice that one of the first things a child does with her crayons is to smell them? Their smell is invigorating and tantalizing.
As already mentioned free coloring pages are a great way to teach your child all sorts of things, numbers for example. There are different ways this can be done, one way would be to simply have the number somewhere on the page, such as the number 10, and then somewhere else on the page would be an object or animal cleverly twisted into that number. There could also simply be 10 of something on the page, you can get your child to color the page in and then count out how many apples for example there are, which will obviously correspond to the number on the page.
I must admit that personally I bought into this concept hook, line and sinker. When my two older daughters were small, I colored with them, and enjoyed doing it. I never realized the calming effect it had on both the girls and me.