By this point, your second grader is used to having a pencil in her hand. Try shaking things up by introducing her to charcoal pencils! These unique drawing tools (found at art supply stores) make blending, shading, and smudging easy enough for even the most amateur artist. Just don't let her get too attached -- charcoal pencils and homework don't mix too well.
What You Need:
- Charcoal pencils
- Regular pencils
- White paper
What You Do:
- Have your child cover her workspace with newspaper.
- Let her use a scratch paper to practice drawing with a regular pencil.
- Take out the charcoal pencils. Does your child know what charcoal is? Let her handle the pencils as you explain that charcoal is commonly produced from wood that has burned in a fire. The wood loses all its oxygen and water as it heats up, and eventually it sometimes turns to coal.
- Have your child experiment with drawing with the charcoal pencils. Does she like drawing with one more than the other?
- Let your child use a regular pencil to draw a line all the way down the piece of paper.
- Have her use a charcoal pencil to draw a line parallel, or side by side, the regular pencil line.
- Show her how to smudge the lines with your own finger.
- See what kind of smudges your child can make. Does one line smudge differently than the other?
- Challenge your child to make shapes with the charcoal smudgings.
- Help her brainstorm a subject to draw with both her regular and charcoal pencils.
- Let her start drawing on a new piece of paper using whatever combination of pencils she likes.
- Charcoal drawing are popular because they produce a unique finished product. What can your child create? Encourage her to draw her favorite places, animals -- or maybe even try a self-portrait.