Art Lab for Kids – Scribble Drawings

Teaching my homeschool group art class has been such a joy to me this year. Having a small group lets me get to know them a little better as we work through our art projects, observing their style of learning, their preferred media, and the way they tackle an assignment.

This week we took a break from our formal artist study and used the ideas from the book Art Lab for Kids to do some Scribble Drawings. It sounds like an easy project but to many of us this kind of assignment is a little scary. First you have to scribble….funny as it sounds, this is not as easy as you think it may be (especially if you are a perfectionist). Getting your hand and your arm to relax to do the scribbling can be hard.

I tried to overcome this a bit by starting our art lesson off with some gesture drawing. We used oversized pieces of newsprint, stood up at the table, and we tried to sketch a model in less than 30 seconds (one of the dads obliged us with some awesome poses). There were giggles and smiles as we worked through the gesture drawings. (Links for gesture drawing: KinderArt and Cool School -little more advanced.)

Then we went back to the scribble drawings and it seemed like everyone was ready to get started.

We scribbled.

Now came the part that was more difficult…the part where they needed to find an image among the scribbles to outline. Was there a bird hiding in the scribbles? A person? An animal? Turns out we had all of the above. Once they turned their papers this way and that, the images emerged and the got started outlining and filling in with colored pencils.

You could at this point cut the finished image out and mount it on black paper but we decided to create a watercolor background for our scribble drawings.


We did a watercolor wash and some did an alcohol spatter. Once the paint was dry we adhered the scribble drawings with double-backed tape.


I am really loving this book, Art Lab for Kids. It gives such clear instructions but yet leaves room for creativity. All the students in my art class had a fun day and we stretched our scribbling muscles and imaginations.

I will be writing a complete review of this book later in November so stay tuned.

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