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Old 01-28-2013, 03:53 PM   #1
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Arts and crafts

Has anyone else noticed that when you take away a child's tools, they get more imaginative in their art work? And more creative? We have a box with play doh in it, and lots of tools- play doh scissors, those spaghetti tubes, stampers, etc. When they do play doh they use the tools for a few minutes, either get frustrated if they can't get them to work, or they cycle through the tools then they're done.

When they play with home made dough, therefore no tools, or something else that doesn't have tools, they play for a much longer time and tend to be more creative and open-minded. Its funny how these tools that are supposed to help them play actually restrict their process.

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Old 01-28-2013, 06:30 PM   #2
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Re: Arts and crafts

Oooh good post. We have a big box of playdoh stuff that I've picked up off freecycle and free CL ages ago (maybe a grocery bag worth of stuff). And now that I'm more into minimalism, I get a little overwhelmed looking at the box. There's a darn cat in there that you can push the play doh through to have "hair" grow but that thing is a pain to clean. There's also some sort of table saw thing that vibrates but it barely fits in the box and gets turned on accidentally sometimes. I'm so ready to get rid of it!

Your post is inspiring me to just ditch the stuff save for a few rollers/tools and call it good. I bet you're totally right. Fewer tools would mean more imagination and less frustration. My kiddo is 1, so the extras are probably overwhelming and frustrating.
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Old 01-28-2013, 07:01 PM   #3
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Re: Arts and crafts

I have noticed that since we purged most of the toys, the kids are more into playdough and art supplies in general. We have a playdoh factory, but not many other tools because they can raid the kitchen tools and cookie cutters for that if they want to. What I have also noticed is many times the kids' friends want to play with playdoh because they aren't allowed to at their house.

The drawback is that my kids are totally into reading and art stuff but a lot of other kids aren't. My kids can spend hours drawing and writing their own comic books. But then their friends come over and they aren't the least bit interested in looking at books or drawing, they want to play with toys they don't have at home. So it makes purging down hard, because I know even though my kids don't play with X on their own, they do when they have friends over. Ugh.
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Old 01-28-2013, 07:03 PM   #4
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My dd purged her own play dough tools believe it or not! The problem with art supplies is that's where I need to purge the most. :/
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Old 01-28-2013, 07:56 PM   #5
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Yes I'm definitely to the point where I need to go through art supplies. Purge the play doh tools, some of the prescripted 'glue this here' crafts, and just keep the random pom pom, glitter, crayons, and paper for more creative play. I ditched a bunch of markers too after telling at them a billion times to keep the lids on. My younger kid breaks crayons, so I'm going to invest in one set of twist up crayons, some colored pencils, a few dry erase markers for special occasions. I do not need 18 different ways for my kids to color!
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Old 01-28-2013, 10:20 PM   #6
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Re: Arts and crafts

I'm with you on the play dough stuff. Plus, it's such a pain to clean.
My kids love white boards. It's so nice when they just get out a board, draw for an hour and put it away. I don't feel guilty about not keeping their art forever and it's not messy at all.
Another thing I realized is that I have all this cool stuff that is supposed to be used a certain way so I held onto them for a rainy day when I had time to show them how to use it. Well, if that day hasn't come yet, it never will. I just let my kids be creative with them and now I have a much smaller craft supply tote.
I can really see that a few good supplies and a little rotation go a long way in all aspects of minimizing.
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Old 02-05-2013, 03:26 PM   #7
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Re: Arts and crafts

Thanks for the encouragement.
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Old 02-07-2013, 07:43 AM   #8
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Re: Arts and crafts

I noticed this too! Our play dough press broke and I tossed it in the trash, the children have been playing much more with the dough now, they just take a knie or fork out of the utensil drawer and play for quite a long time making shapes and cutting things out. Not only do they play longer and nicer but that's got to be better for fine motor skills, cutting something out with a dull knife requires more thought and precision than putting dough in a press and pushing a lever. now if I would just apply this to the coloring pile and ditch the massive pile of half used coloring books I would really make some progress!
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Old 02-07-2013, 08:20 AM   #9
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Re: Arts and crafts

Quote:
Originally Posted by marliah View Post
I noticed this too! Our play dough press broke and I tossed it in the trash, the children have been playing much more with the dough now, they just take a knie or fork out of the utensil drawer and play for quite a long time making shapes and cutting things out. Not only do they play longer and nicer but that's got to be better for fine motor skills, cutting something out with a dull knife requires more thought and precision than putting dough in a press and pushing a lever. now if I would just apply this to the coloring pile and ditch the massive pile of half used coloring books I would really make some progress!
I went through our coloring books once, took out the uncolored pages, and put them in a folder. The kids went through them after that. I think they were overwhelmed with having to go through the books to find the uncolored pages.
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Old 02-07-2013, 11:00 AM   #10
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Quote:
Originally Posted by tallanvor

I went through our coloring books once, took out the uncolored pages, and put them in a folder. The kids went through them after that. I think they were overwhelmed with having to go through the books to find the uncolored pages.
This is a great idea! I think I'll go do it right now!
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