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11 TIPS: on sketching with your children at a museum

Over the weekend my girls and I visited our local Zoology museum. We did one of our favourite things, we spent more than 2 hours sketching animals, sitting next to each other chatting and laughing. It was such a lovely afternoon spent together. I shared about it in my instagram and thought it would be nice to share some of my tips about taking your kids sketching at a museum.

Going out sketching with your kids at the museum

encourages them to see and really look at things,

to slow down to catch details that might have

passed them by with only a quick look.

11 TIPS for drawing at a museum with your kids:

1. For us, being a bit prepared always comes in handy, we have a ready made pouch that we grab with us with their own sketchbook and pencils(although most of the time my girls steal all of my pencils and stuff :D

2. Ask if they have foldable seats for you to use, most do but might be tucked away at the entrance of the museum. Those seats just make everything more exciting to kids!

3. Start by finding a spot that isn't too crowded but also has a few really interesting animals to draw.

4. Drawing in public is tricky. People will come over and talk to you and be interested. Hey! You are doing something interesting! Don't worry about what other people think about your drawings, they are your drawings. But if you are shy about drawing in public, then find a spot that isn't high traffic. I also find that as I have a bit more on my page, I loosen up and it becomes easier to let go.

5. Sometimes my girls will draw an animal and then ask me to guess which one it is- which is a great way to get them excited about it!

6. Another one is to draw a specific animal at the same time as your child. Then you can talk about the animal, maybe they can read the facts out loud to you from the signs or share together which part is tricky to capture! Ask for advice from them, and offer it if they need.

7. Try sitting far away to draw and then try to go up closer and see the difference in your drawings.

8. Praise them, but don't blindly praise- do it with intention. Don't just say "cool drawing." Really look at their drawing and perhaps say something like "I really love how you've looked closely at the shape of the eyes!" Or "Wow! You really captured the expression of that Hamerkop bird!"

9. Encourage them to fill the page up whether it be with drawings or facts. Both are good. There are no rules.

10. Perfection is never the goal... just looking and investigating!

11. Most importantly! Remember to have fun together, so definitely find the animal that makes you laugh the most and give them the silliest name you can think of!

I hope this may encourage some of you to go out and draw with your children, too!

- Birgitta Sif


-Museum of Zoology- Cambridge University

-sketchbooks : we have ones in varying sizes similar to this and this

- Pencils these and these for details . Also these are great for understanding shading. I love using these when I'm out sketching.

- My books

-My SHOP of drawings

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