Why Create an Art Center?

Kitchen
Because kids love art! And because creating an art center in your home will foster their emotional, physical, and creative development. Tired of stepping on art supplies or cleaning up after projects? A simple solution is to set up an art area that your kids manage. Put them in charge. Give them containers and shelves and let them create an organized art center where it’s convenient for you and them. Encourage independence and watch kids rise to the occasion.

Where Is It and What's In It?

What?
Kids love to do things for themselves. They act responsibly when treated "grown-up" and know they are responsible for their special art space. Encourage independence and kids will rise to the occasion.

Where?
Sitting Room
Arts and crafts can be done just about anywhere. Just designate a table and a couple of chairs in a playroom, the basement, or the kitchen. An advantage of ?kitchen table crafts? is that young children can easily be supervised by a parent who is busy with other activities in the kitchen. An older child who can work more independently may enjoy setting up an art center in his or her bedroom.

Bedroom
You can start with an existing shelf or shelves, then add on other organizers based on the size of your kids? art supply stash. Purchase Crayola art organizers to hold supplies or simply use recycled plastic tubs.

Decide which supplies can be left available all the time, so kids can use them and put them away without nagging you. Stow away any supplies that you?d rather save for supervised crafting. You know best what your kids can handle on their own or with minimal supervision. Also make sure kids know the rules about how and where they can use these ?anytime? supplies.

What's in the Art Center?
Shelves and containers are key to keeping the art center organized. Help your kids stay organized by giving them a place to put everything.

Dedicate a shelf in your kitchen or play room, just for art supplies. Kitchen
A shelf helps kids keep the materials organized better than a toy chest where loose items get dumped and spill. You can purchase Crayola? organizers to hold supplies or use recycled plastic tubs. Many families find large, sturdy containers better for long-term use that the original cardboard boxes. Kids could enjoy decorating recycled shoeboxes, labeled to store crayons, markers, and colored pencils.

Decide what supplies you want to have available all the time, so kids can use them and put them away without nagging you. These "anytime" art supplies might include crayons, washable markers, colored pencils and depending on the age of your child, scissors and glue sticks. Some parents feel comfortable including watercolor pans or washable paint to the list of "anytime supplies." You decide what your kids can handle "on their own" with minimal supervision.

Let kids know they have "permission" to use these "anytime" supplies, if they put them away after using them.