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Benefits of Coloring for Children

By Christel Daundaratne (OT and a Mom)

1. Supports Fine Motor Development


We need the ability to use our small muscles of our fingers, hands and palm in a fluid and a coordinated manner to perform number of tasks through our lifetime. For example, imagine how difficult it would be to type this content or to eat the scrambled egg with a standard fork for breakfast. Ideally, this fine motor skills are gradually developed from our early childhood. Notedly, since your baby grabs patent’s finger or trying to touch mother’s breast while being fed. Truly, holding a colors stick, scribbling, and coloring images are great tasks to enhance their fine motor skills. Further, hand-eye coordination is another important sub-skill that you can help to improve with coloring. It is our ability of the brain to coordinate visual information with our motor functions appropriately. For example, when deficient, one will face difficulties to reach or touch anything in their visual field. Truly, coloring is a great exercise to improve this function for any child with or without special needs. In addition, this is an activity that will be little helpful to develop hand strength as well. However, this particular benefit of coloring is lesser compared to tasks as playing with clay or squeezing activities that are more focused on strength building. Always know, every child is unique and give them their time to learn and develop and your duty is to support create opportunities to do so.

a toddler with coloring page by christel nalaka daundaratne

2. Builds Focus

It is a great challenge to build concentration and focus of a child. Simply, think of a moment you tried to get Amy or Chris sit still and focus on online elementary class during the pandemic. Mostly, it must have been a tiring process. Well, coloring pages are a great tool for them to build focus and help to stay concentrating on a specific task for a longer period. First, coloring is something that the child likes to do and an activity, typically, that they must stay at a one place. By doing so, eventually, their mind gets used to engage in a task consistently, with practice. Also, it helps to control restlessness due to its relaxational properties.


3. Helps to Relax


Coloring can be considered as a way of meditation. It centers child’s attention to a one task and allows to be aware of all details related to image and coloring steps. This, focus takes the child away from restless thoughts and give a relaxation which can calm a child from their hyperactive and restless behaviors. This is a huge benefit for both child and the parents in respect of giving relaxation. Especially, with children with developmental delays, certain behavioral and brain disorders who might possess increased level of restlessness.


4. Improves Communication

little girl colroing with pain by christel nalaka daundaratne

For some children, arts and graphics is a mean of communication to express their feelings, thoughts or needs. Learning to draw and color are the fundamental skills that they need to develop their way of self-expression through artwork and graphics. For example, a specific child with special needs may use drawing and coloring to communicate much effectively than other medium. Also, a child might use colors and images to present their inner thoughts and feelings associated to emotions and personal experiences.


5. It's Educational

a boy with teddy bear coloring a picture by nalaka daundaratne

A child learns a lot from while coloring numerous pictures. They get to know different colors, shapes, animals, letters, machinery, professions, people, nature, etc. Each time, their curiosity creates the need to learn more about new things. For example, a child who starts to color pages with animals will know how to identify them and would question and learn more about other animals.  Similarly, coloring is a great starting point to learn languages and letters. While coloring pictures of alphabet will help learn shapes and structure of letters. Then, curiosity will help them to learn more words which will help with language development.

yellow flower art work by gajendra nalaka daundaratne

6. A time to Bond

mother and child colring together for bonding by christel nalaka daundaratne

For a busy working parent who gets limited opportunities to interact with the child, coring will open a chance to bond and connect very effectively. While child is engaging in an activity that he/she adores, the parent gets the opportunity to help, guide and praise the work. These positive feedbacks energize and bring happiness to the child creating a pleasant time interacting with the parent.

woman resting and watching tv by gajendra nalaka daudaratne

7. Moment For Selfcare

Parenting a child is a beautiful yet an exhausting process if proper support is not present. Especially, if the child has more challenges related to special needs. So, it is important to find ways to have opportunities of sufficient rest in between to avoid/minimize burnouts, health deterioration and other negative impacts. Certainly, directing a child to engage in coloring is a tremendous idea to allow the parent to have a good block of time to rest and selfcare. Sometimes, 15-20 minutes that she might get will worth a million for life and health. So, use Christel’s coloring pages to give your self a little break so both you and your child can have a healthy and safe living.

Selfcare 2

Coloring is significantly easy and a cost effective activity that will help you to improve child's development and your wellbeing. Feel free to use information about benefits and guidelines about coloring for your child's benefit.  Christel Daundaratne & Melissa Jordan

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CREDIITS: My thanks go to Gajendra Nalaka Daundaratne who is a young talented newly graduated web designer who offered us his creativity and service for free to help us to form Christel's Coloring Pages. I wish Gajendra (Little cuz) all the best.

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