Process art, which is art that focuses more on the process and development of foundational art skills versus copying someone else’s design or following exact steps, is a great way to help develop essential social and emotional skills.
Five SEL skills children can practice during a process art lesson are:
- Self-management and organizing tasks (Ex: “I was told to create a dinosaur. What is my plan? How long will it take me?)
- Analyzing situations (Responsible decision-making) (Ex: “I only have 3 materials. Which ones will work best for my design?)
- Solving problems (Responsible decision-making) (Ex: “I tried using paper and glue, but my design didn’t work. What can I use instead?)
- Reflect on choices (this helps develop metacognitive thinking!) (Ex: “I like how the color of my design turned out, but not the size. Next time I think I will use__.”)
- Developing self-awareness and self-efficacy (these skills are essential for learning growth, growth mindset and empathy building) (Ex: “This is what I learned from this project: ___, “I wasn’t sure I could build a dinosaur, but I made an effort and I did it!”)
Process art allows children to have an increased amount of control over their environment and behavior which is great practice for developing SEL skills. Talking about SEL skills is important, but practice is even more important!