Subject of drawing: The worst change
This project is designed to help you better understand the changes your
children fear. Some of the fears might be realistic-- maybe a move is
likely, a change in schools or financial resources. Some fears are unlikely
but very real. Children may express fears that others will die or go away.
This allows you to begin to understand their concerns and take steps to
reassure them each day.
Before talking about the drawings, ask each child to complete the following
open-ended statements about their picture. One at a time read aloud the
fill-in-the-blank statements below. Write completed sentences on the back
of the picture, or ask them to tell you what to write.
The name of my picture is:
I wish I could:
If I could change one thing I would:
Sometimes it seems like:
Don’t ever expect me to:
What I need most today is:
Show and tell
After completing the sentences, tell your children that you hope they
will share something about their drawing. Tell them that they can share
whatever they want to share, and suggest they begin by reading the sentences
that summarize the picture.
If children agree to share, ask who will go first and begin the process
taking turns. If children are reluctant to share you may share your drawing
first. Read the sentences on the back of your picture. Model a brief show
and tell so they learn that sharing even a little is okay. Then ask if
they have questions about your drawing. Continue taking turns.
After each family member shares his thoughts, ask if it would be okay
for family members to share their reflections about the drawing. If this
is okay, take the first turn and model appropriate, uncritical reflections.
It is important not to comment about the quality of a picture but to focus
on its content. For example: Martha, I noticed you are very tiny in the
picture or Sam, I noticed you used only the black crayon today. (Words
for all to avoid: nice, good, pretty, beautiful, ugly, dumb, etc.)
Round table discussion
Talk about fears that have not come to pass, even if they are fears that
you had growing up. Everyone has fears and most often our fears do not
play out. It is a good idea to talk about times that the family has met
unexpected challenges - it is reassuring to realize that family members
survive despite occasional failure. You may close with a favorite poem,
meditation or prayer inviting children to help by reading or reciting