Wednesday, April 8, 2015
So, Your Toddler Has Colored On The Walls
Prevent the first by doing the second!
If you're a parent, your walls are going to get colored on. It's just a matter of life. Even watching like a hawk, at some point you're going to have to pee or they're going to wake up before you do, and your walls will be their canvas. Try not to get too upset about it. It's a phase and pretty much every human that ever was or ever will be will do this.
The best thing you can do is invest in washable crayons and try to discourage them when caught in the act. Reacting after they're done won't be very effective. They may be confused as to why you're mad and what you're mad about. Just wash it off and be diligent.
Try encouraging them to color on other, more appropriate things. Things like chalk boards, construction paper, and cardboard are great for young chalk artists and paper in various shapes, textures, and sizes is great for keeping your crayon enthusiast interested. Markers, even washable, should be kept under lock and key and only used when you will be present because markers transfer so easily before you know it it's on EVERYTHING.
The creative drive is powerful and you don't want them to think you're discouraging creativity at all. So scold them if you must, but also direct them to where art is okay to happen! That part is important. Because if you scold them and take away their utensils, they will just strive to do it when you aren't around -- unless you scold them often enough that they think drawing is completely against the rules. No one wants that.
Another way to get their creative ya-yas out in the right place is to join them. Color beside them, compliment their technique. Better yet, draw pictures for them to fill in. Toddlers love this because they see you create something from nothing and get to take part in it. You bond, they learn, your walls are safe: it's a win for everybody. Ultimately, if you give them enough outlets for creativity, you'll find they won't feel compelled to repaint your home as often, if at all.