I’ve always had the problem of what to do with the children’s artwork when they are done.
I always feel bad sending it home because I know its either going to get thrown out or otherwise ruined.
A big problem also with young children’s art is that it is most often process only art.
That is art in which the process is what is important and the children are left to create what they are developmentally ready for. This means that the artwork does look messy.
There are parents that don’t appreciate this kind of artwork and have a hard time accepting their child’s work as art.
One summer I came up with a great idea for the children’s artwork.
(since we always use the 9×12 sheets of tagboard and the sheet protectors are smaller than that, we have been cutting down our tagboard for years. I recently discovered that they do sell sheet projectors that are a big larger than the papers.
What we put into these books basically are a compilation of the process only art activities the children did over the summer. (what you see here are examples from our art camp that we run in the summers). When the children do an activity like tissue paper painting, collages or anything else in the program, we made sure they did at least one on a piece of paper that fit into a sheet protector.
We then typed up on the computer an explanation of how we did the project. Each project had a sheet protector and the explanation went in the back of the page before it. Some of the objects on the pages went over the edges and you may have to trim them a bit to fit into the sheet protectors.(If you are interested in doing this with their large artwork, they do sell 11×14 sheet protectors)
This way if was done in a school or camp the parents now know how to replicate the activity, but not only that, the artwork looks really beautiful and quite professional.
I enlarged the image below so you can see more clearly how the activity is explained.The kids just love these books and instead of their pictures handing on the fridge and then being thrown out, they are kept forever. This way they also get to see great growth when they do the same projects a year or so later and see how much differently they did it.
I still meet children years later who tell me how they still have their art books and they still spend time looking at them.