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HOW GROUP ART PROJECTS CAN MAKE CHILDREN BETTER ADULTS

group art projects picture

 

There is no doubt that creating art, in any form, can help children learn and become more self-confident and independent.

There is even evidence that enjoying creative activities can improve health.

It’s a wonderful feeling to be focused on a creation, in a world of your own, enjoying the solitude and immersed in your project.

When a group of people come together to create something, another kind of magic happens.

I see it all the time when working with people with disabilities.

A certain excitement and energy comes with working on group art projects

The shyer students find their voice and confidence. The more outspoken students relish in their ability to encourage and support their fellow artists.

Those who would normally not be interested in socialising with the others, or offering a helping hand, suddenly start volunteering to help those who need it.

It really feels like magic is happening. I can see them growing and gaining confidence by the minute.

BENEFITS TO CHILDREN IN GROUP ART PROJECTS

group art projects picture

The same is true for children working together on group art projects.

It teaches them important skills that will, in effect, make them better adults.

It gives them the opportunity to focus on cooperation and communication, rather than competition.

Working in groups helps them to gain a better understanding of themselves, by gaining a better understanding of others.

It gives them an opportunity to appreciate other people’s skills and take pride in their own.

Working together is the perfect environment for exchanging new ideas and points of view.

Bit by bit, the children learn to give up on their vulnerability – they are all in the same boat. They learn to let go of a fear of failure.

This is the perfect atmosphere for children to learn about supporting and encouraging each other and gives them enhanced social skills and interactions.

Group art projects offer a great opportunity to fine tune negotiation and conflict resolution skills. They provide excellent preparation for the teamwork the children will be involved in later in life – in their jobs.

WORKING IN GROUP ART PROJECTS HELPS CHILDREN LEARN MORE

Researchers found that students working together on an art project participated more in thoughtful discussion than those who were working solo.

This study, conducted by the Institute of Education at London University, involved 4000 students between the ages of 5 and 14.

Researchers found the students were not only accomplishing the task but were focusing intently and demonstrating better communication skills.

Students who work in small groups learn more of what is being taught, retain the information better and appear more satisfied with their classes, according to an article from the University of Arkansas.

The article, Collaborative Learning: Group Work and Study Teams, claims children learn valuable skills by working together in groups.

By promoting interdependence, students learn how to motivate and encourage one another.

The environment of group art projects helps children build a sense of comradery and community as they work towards a common goal.

It gives them the chance to appreciate the differences of others and acts as a bridge between different social and cultural groups.

While pooling their knowledge and skills, the students are also learning how to develop their own voice and perspective in relation to others.

Group art projects encourage discussion and offer the chance to give and receive feedback, which develops better communication skills.

GROUP ART PROJECTS FOSTER A SENSE OF BEING PART OF SOMETHING SPECIAL

They also promote a sense of being part of something and establish a shared identity with other group members.

I remember the joy on my students’ faces when we completed a major artwork to celebrate their journey towards independent living.

group art projects picture

This group of students, all with intellectual disabilities, kept voicing their concern they couldn’t do the work.

They had no faith in their own abilities and “I can’t” seemed to be their favourite phrase.

By the time we had completed the mural, not one of the students voiced that concern again.

More than the individual confidence the project gave them, it also fostered a sense of unity.

Friendships were forged where before they were mere acquaintances, even though they shared the same residence.

After this project was completed, the students insisted on showing their individual artworks to the others – something they had not wanted to do previously. This always resulted in much cheering and clapping.

This same group were responsible for making the beautiful mosaic spades featured in my post, Mosaic Madness – How to Create Masterpieces.

Together, they also made an enormous and beautiful dragon to use as a float for a fun day they were having.

group art projects picture

Former students in my Wacky Workshops classes banded together to make a beautiful pop art version of the Mona Lisa (pictured at the top of the page).

She still graces the Wacky walls.

Each child painted different sections of the picture and when completed, they were put together.

The children were delighted with the end result. They each did a mini version to take home with them.

HOW TO PROVIDE GROUP ART PROJECTS FOR CHILDREN

So, how do you provide opportunities for your children to work on group art projects?

Why not have a play day with some of their friends? The next Wacky Wednesday project will give you some ideas for artworks.

For many years, I used Easter as an excuse to encourage group art projects with my family.

These projects ranged from dying eggs and using those and other crafts to make a table centrepiece, to making individual Easter pictures that were sewn together to make a wall-hanging.

Another way is to enrol your children in an arts program that encourages group art projects.

Wacky Workshops provides plenty of opportunities for students to work together.

This arts and craft school for children operates out of the lower Blue Mountains.

Right from the start students are involved in contributing to the Wacky welcome tree.

Sometimes we work together on temporary artworks, such as giant sand castles.

Visit The Wacky Workshops Page to learn more.

If you want to host your own group art event for kids, read my post, 7 Fun Ideas for Group Art Projects.

Follow the Wacky Workshops Facebook page for more inspiration.

Wishing you a gleeful week, Tamuria.

 

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24 Comments

  1. Oh, I love all of this! Every single point here is so empowering to kids, which translates into empowered adults. But if it was just this, it would be enough: “By promoting interdependence, students learn how to motivate and encourage one another.”
    Now, wouldn’t that change the world . . .

    • That certainly would change the world, Susan. Teaching all people these skills early in life would make a huge impact.

  2. Tamuria,
    This is an excellent article and so many creative ways to help the children with their own creativity. This is great and I am sure that the children love working on these projects. It helps to get children engaged and open to learn.

    Lori English

    • The children really do enjoy these group projects, Lori, and they teach them so many important skills for adult life.

  3. What a fun blog to read. Creating a space where children can feel safe, create and share is so important. The influence you have on children and adults Tamuria will be long-lasting!
    Candess recently posted…Healing HandsMy Profile

    • I hope so, Candess. Anything we can do to help our kids be happy and healthy adults is a wonderful thing.

  4. Having raised boys (one who loves art), and having shuttled them from sport to sport, I love seeing the emphasis on art from a team perspective. I watched a group of teenagers create a wall mural on a downtown building, and their work rivaled any football game I had witnessed. Love keeping arts in the minds of our young’uns.
    stuff4uand4u recently posted…Stainless Flatware is not Stain-freeMy Profile

    • I’m so passionate about promoting creativity in kids. All the more so now that I realise how many adults have so little belief in their creative abilities. I did the sports shuttle service with my three sons too and loved to watch them play sport. It’s a different kind of energy created on a joint art project though – more peaceful and with less expectation, has been my experience.

  5. This is GREAT! We are raising our 13 year old granddaughter and she’s been attending weekly art school at our museum since pre-k. She’s developed a special bond with the kids in this class and they’ve learned so much from each other. By 13 she has a confidence as well as a critical eye in her art that I envy. Thanks for sharing this! I love your post.

    • Cathy, you are amazing to be raising your grandchild. What an enormous task! I’m so pleased you got her involved in art early. It makes so much difference. The feedback that I’ve been getting from former students, now in their teens, has been truly wonderful and I know that art and craft lessons have given them extra confidence. Thank you for your very kind words.

  6. Hi Tami,

    There’s nothing like the camaraderie that comes from working on a project as a group or doing something as a team!
    Geniece Brown recently posted…[Client Case Study] How I Gained a Client From a Speaking EventMy Profile

    • I absolutely agree, Geniece, especially if the end result is more about creating, rather than competing.

  7. Can’t tell you how much I love this one! I took away some ideas to try with my family, and I look forward to the project ideas in next week’s post.
    Reba Linker recently posted…The Purim Story Stays in the PictureMy Profile

  8. I absolutely loved this! I have been having problems with my sons concentration at school (8 years old) He is a clever boy, very good with numbers and anything creative. So i have been delving into his creative side and last weekend i bought both kids a water science project each. We were in the garden for close 2 hours all working together, it was so much fun!
    Sonya Kolodziejska recently posted…Identifying Your Target Audience on Social MediaMy Profile

    • I’m delighted to hear you are encouraging your son’s creative side, Sonya. I feel certain this will help him academically as well.Schools are designed to educate the masses but often individuals fall through the cracks and it’s up to parents to stop this from happening. One sure way to do this, and celebrate a child’s individuality, is through creative pursuits.

  9. I’m totally for group arts with kids. My daughter is a good example of how it can help kids to be better people in the future. We always organize weekends just for that as a family

    • I love to hear when families set aside time to participate in group art projects, Apolline. It’s such a wonderful way to bond together, as well as providing many learning opportunities.

  10. I love this so much! Individual contribution to the collective team is SO important to teach and train our young ones. One of the things that I appreciated about working, learning and teaching at the University of Phoenix was the emphasis on TEAM projects. It really shifted the paradigm of higher education. Although we are talking about little ones here, it’s important to set the tone early. Great article!
    Tandy Elisala recently posted…52 Weeks of Happiness: Week 12 – Who makes you feel happy?My Profile

    • I was running an art class with a group of kids the other day and we were having a ball spattering paint to make abstract pictures. At the end of the class, I asked the students what was their favourite part of the lesson and they all said when we were all spattering the paint onto a huge piece of paper to make a group art project. I was watching them cooperate and collaborate and saw they were learning so much, but even better, they were having so much fun.

  11. It is amazing how art can impact a child’s life. Two of my nieces excel in art and are really passionate about it. I hope they are able to continue their art enrichment activities at school. With arts education becoming such a low priority for education these days (heck, even education is a low priority for our ruling politicians), I’m glad to see such creative ideas that one can do at home or with a small group outside of school.
    Jennifer Quisenberry recently posted…Breaking Up with Sugar -Top 10 Reasons to End Your RelationshipMy Profile

    • It is so sad how art has become such a low priority in education, Jennifer, particularly as all the research points to the creation of art helping kids learn better. I’m volunteering to run a workshop at my granddaughters’ day care centre next week and what I’m hearing is that they have cut back on arts and crafts too, because of the need to get the kids ‘school ready’. This just makes me more passionate about sharing creativity wherever I can.

  12. Yes, group art is the way to go. If the young children are almost always facing gadgets, this group art will deviate their attention and learn more values like sharing, joint effort, being a follower and a leader, etc.

    • That’s right, Lorii, so many important life skills can be learned while having fun on a group art project.

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