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Teaching Kids to Draw is More Than Just Keeping Them Busy

Drawing apps can play a big role in a child's development

She likes (Osmo) because she is able to learn to draw things she is interested in but she is also building critical thinking skills.
- Liz Madrid, mother of four children

These days, keeping kids occupied can feel like a full-time job. I mean, you can only watch “Frozen 2” so many times. But when kids are on devices like tablets and phones, parents want to make sure it’s not just YouTube and Netflix.

If parents want kids to be creative during screen time, drawing apps could be the perfect solution.

Drawing Can Help You Remember Many Words

Learning to draw can have multiple advantages. In addition to improving motor skills and flourishing creativity, drawing can help with memory.

A 2018 study connected drawing with improved memory. The research found drawing to be superior to help boost memory, increasing memory recall by nearly double. Specifically, drawing can enhance learning language, pictures, and definitions.

Drawing Apps Can be a Win-Win for Parents & Kids

Ashleigh Sealing, a Colorado mom, has been quarantined for the past few months with a 3-year-old and a newborn baby. Sealing said she tried sitting down with a workbook to teach her older daughter to trace shapes, letters, and numbers but it wasn’t working.

“She sees me as a mommy, not a teacher,” she said. “She would refuse to trace anything, but yet she did it at school every day. I know she loves her iPad so I went searching for free apps that would gain her interest and keep her paying attention and make it fun.”

So Sealing found apps like ABC Kids Tracing and Phonics and Draw to help encourage her kid to draw at home.

“She is supposed to start pre-school this fall and while she is an excellent speaker, she has trouble identifying letters and numbers, she lacks interest in sitting down to do work and rather play,” she said. “When she draws, she presses really hard on the medium she’s using and scribbles quite a bit. The app for drawing shows her how to keep it within the lines or boundaries and, hopefully, that can translate to paper. Her attention span on the app can last three times as long as it does with paper.”

Her daughter has really enjoyed apps that give rewards.

“Having a newborn plus a global pandemic already took a toll on my emotional and mental health,” Sealing said. “This was not only educational but could allow me to spend time with the newest addition while giving our oldest one time to herself while she used the app.”

Developing Strong Critical Thinking Skills

Liz Madrid is a mom with four kids. Madrid said her three younger children love to draw and use apps. Her youngest, 6, uses Osmo.

“She likes it because she is able to learn to draw things she is interested in but she is also building critical thinking skills,” said Madrid. “It does give her something to do when I am trying to help the older kids or vice versa.”

Make Drawing a Competition

Drawing Desk is another drawing app that can help kids explore their creative side. The app is for all ages and includes a “kid’s desk,” along with kid-friendly tools from pens, pencils, crayons and markers to stamps, glitter glue, prints, and color-changing pens. And to keep it fresh, Drawing Desk adds new coloring pages every day.

If you want to make drawing a game, Draw Something adds a competitive element to drawing. The Pictionary-style game can pit friends and family members in a friendly drawing competition. You can choose different levels of difficulty and earn coins for more challenging drawings.

Kids can play Draw Something with the help of a parent with an email address. 

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