Artistic expression is the channeling of ideas and intellectual sensations outwards and towards others through an artistic discipline.
Throughout their development, children make a mental representation of the world around them or idealize it in a symbolic way, building an intellectual structure that will later help them “conduct themselves” through society and the environment.
But this process loses efficacy and stability if it cannot be expressed. The expression is, metaphorically, the veneer that encompasses and protects memories and symbolic structures. This is something proven in the study methodology: when two colleagues get together to study a topic, the one who retains it more easily and accurately is the one who tries to explain it to the other.
Between the ages of two and five, children already begin to develop complex ideas but have not yet mastered the language to transmit them fluently and naturally. Artistic expression in this age group helps to reflect these ideas in various materials: scribbles, drawings, constructions with wood or pieces of toys, placement of objects, elaboration with sand or earth …
I don’t just mean ideas, but emotions. It is common for people, when they are restless, to dedicate themselves to placing something: their papers, tools, clothes from the closet … I understand that this is also a form of expression, since we structure a series of elements with a pattern and an intention. The end result is that the act of placing these objects in an orderly fashion helps us calm down.
In children, the possibility of experimenting and expressing with different elements such as paintings, wooden blocks, fabrics, markers … will give way to the construction of projects such as cardboard houses, car garages dug out of the earth, castles built with sand … All this will not have the value that is often given to it of: “color this card without leaving the edges of the drawing” or “copy this construction with these pieces”, but rather that of the translation of an intellectual project in a material act. It is reasonable to think that the opportunity to have these experiences in childhood will facilitate the development of vital projects (regarding work, training or family) in maturity.