Art and Safety: Some basic safety tips

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Art safety is a very important consideration you need to take into account when preparing art activities to do with preschool or actually any age children.

Actually the younger the children the more careful you have to be with art materials. Toddlers and babies tend to put things in their mouths, stick things up their noses and ears and are especially fascinated with bottles. Babies and toddlers to eat everything and they often don’t  differentiate between food and non food.

With older children you have to worry more about the materials themselves and vapors and toxins that some art materials are made with.

To begin with let me explain some of the risk factors associated with some art materials.

  1. Children absorb toxic materials a lot more rapidly than adults which can effect their nervous systems and brains.
  2. Children themselves are smaller so anything that they ingest or breathe in that is unhealthy will be more concentrated
  3. Children don’t have much strength and will often open bottles with their teeth leaving their mouths very near to the possibly toxic materials.
  4. Many children suck their fingers or thumbs after touching art materials
  5. Kids also tend to sniff things which may have harmful vapors

How to make sure the children have SAFE experiences with art:

  • Read labels: If label say keep out of reach of children it is probably best not to use it at all with younger children and under close supervision with older children.
  • Only use supplies like paint and glues that say FOR CHILDREN only
  • Avoid old supplies as standards change and you never know if what you have lying around the house for a few years is still considered safe
  • Teach children the proper way to use the materials by modeling how to use them
  • Stay as close to the really young ones as kids must have enough supervision

When giving the children art activities make sure that there is a secure workplace for them with all unsafe materials out of reach.

Try to use only washable paints and markers and use the school liquid glue as opposed to any aerosol sprays.

Also try when the children use chalk to make an attempt to rub off any extra chalk so that they don’t ingest any of the dust.

If they need to use glazes use a lead free one and make sure you are using it with the children.

All in all there are so many child friendly art supplies today that you really have  nothing to worry about if you just make sure everything says for children. Don’t let your over concern for safety keep the children away from wonderful art experiences.

There are many websites you can go to to check out more details of various art products and their art safety levels.

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