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What can your 3 - 4 yr old draw?

(43 Posts)
SuperBunny Sat 29-Aug-09 22:08:28

DS will be 4 next month and can do scribbles. Sometimes he says they are trains/ tractors/ mummy etc but they don't resemble anything. I thought that was quite normal til I chatted with a fellow MNer who was telling me about 3 yr olds who can draw recognizable people with clear body parts shock

Is DS a typical 3 yr old boy or is he way behind with his artistic skills?

PavlovtheForgetfulCat Sat 29-Aug-09 22:13:11

DD (3.2) can draw people - a round body with eyes (little circles) and a nose (a tiny circle) and a mouth (long circle), hair (scribble on top) arms (very long lines outwards with scribble on the ends) and legs with feet (long lines downwards with scribble on the ends).

She does dinosaurs - aka the above, tigers, as above, rhinos, as above! But with perhaps a different colour on to distinguish the difference!

As for cars/tractors or other objects, she draws squares/circles with scribble.

She does 'writing' which is scribble along with some dialogue grin

Sounds about normal to me!

clayre Sat 29-Aug-09 22:13:35

my ds 4.5 can draw people that consist of a head with arms, legs, eyes, nose and mouth and sometimes a wee bit of hair, he cant draw anything else recognisable.

PinkyRed Sat 29-Aug-09 22:16:44

My dd (3.9) draws people with big circles for heads, eyes, noses with nostrils etc. Sometimes she draws another circle underneath for their bodies, sometimes she just has arms and legs coming out directly from their heads!

No idea whether that's normal but I think they're absolutely lovely!

IdrisTheDragon Sat 29-Aug-09 22:17:10

DD will be 4 next month as well and can draw recognisable people and other things.

DS will be 6 in November and was nowhere near DD's artistic ability at the same age. He did scribbles which you could occasionally recognise. I presumed he was normal and DD advanced (which she is compared to how he was).

He is about to go into Year 1 at school and is probably somewhat above average in his achievements so far - I don't think his drawing ability at 4 made any differencesmile.

SuperBunny Sat 29-Aug-09 22:17:26

Thanks. I think I should spend a bit more time with him doing arty stuff.

yama Sat 29-Aug-09 22:18:05

I reckon it's all about practise. Dd can draw people (she will be 4 in a month). However, she loves to draw.

Nursery staff say girls tend to love drawing and writing whereas boys at this age would much rather play with cars.

IdrisTheDragon Sat 29-Aug-09 22:18:25

Only if you want to I would say. I didn't especially with DS and it doesn't seem to matter smile

Stinkyfeet Sat 29-Aug-09 22:18:58

Ds2 (3.6) draws people - a large mishapen circle (head), 2 smaller circles with dots (eyes), a smiley mouth and 2 long lines (legs). No body or arms. He doesn't draw anything else recognisable.

I would say he is at least 6 months in advance of what ds1 could do at the same age.

PavlovtheForgetfulCat Sat 29-Aug-09 22:19:34

yama i have heard that too, that girls are more into drawing earlier, as well as books and reading/writing, bys are more practical but they pretty much meet up a few years on.

piscesmoon Sat 29-Aug-09 22:19:40

Completely normal-they start school with a tremendous range of ability.

feedthegoat Sat 29-Aug-09 22:20:23

Ds is 4 in a couple of months and is only just starting to do vaguely recognisable drawings. Well, if you use your imagination abit anyway grin.

Some look like scribble than he'll do the odd one where you can see he is attemping the object he is trying to draw.

He has been able to write his name for about 4 months. I only discovered this when I gave him a friends birthday card to scribble write his name in grin

Most of what he does is still random scribble though!

KristinaM Sat 29-Aug-09 22:21:56

my 3.9 yo DS loves colouring, but it all just looks like scribbles. he is very clear that its a train or mummy etc etc

i thinks thats normal

yama Sat 29-Aug-09 22:27:53

Pavlov - I'm amazed that children as young as (only turned) four start school in England and Northern Ireland. Sorry, don't know about Wales.

I thought Scotland was bad enough but the very youngest they start here is four and a half. Personally I think there is value in extending the period of time for play.

Apologies - I realise that I'm going off on a tangent.

SuperBunny Sat 29-Aug-09 22:33:20

Yeah, DS is really good at other things. I'm not terribly worried, I was just wondering. I think it would be nice to do some drawing with him - we used to do it a lot but I've forgotten recently. Thanks - I feel better now. smile

mathanxiety Sat 29-Aug-09 22:33:45

Sounds normal. There's a huge range of artistic ability and ambition in this age group. Spending time trying to improve his efforts or focus him on art is a waste of time if he's just not that into it. Find something he likes doing and do that together instead. Your anxiety about his drawing will rub off and end up having negative effects if you push him. They all develop in their own direction and at their own speed where drawing is concerned. Self-expression is important, and it shouldn't be compared to the results other DCs achieve. Maybe drawing is not his thing but he likes blocks, clay, collage, fingerpainting, pavement chalk, cake ruining decoration?

PavlovtheForgetfulCat Sat 29-Aug-09 22:42:04

(yama - i agree, I would prefer DD start school at 6!)

SuperBunny Sat 29-Aug-09 22:46:42

He does quite like drawing - he scribbles a lot and asks me to draw things for him because he 'can't' - he wants to be able to but isn't there yet. We do a lot of chalking on the patio and writing in the sand at the beach. I know he'll be ok - I'm not going to push him, I just wondered if he were horribly behind but it seems that he is perfectly ok.

hester Sat 29-Aug-09 22:47:39

dd is nearly 4, has done loads of art at home and at nursery, and has a very artistic mother (honestly, I am!).

Not to put too fine a point on it, she has the artistic skills of a newborn rabbit. On a very good day, she can draw you a circle. Every other day, she just scribbles on the paper like a toddler given their first crayon. Forget drawing anything recognisable.

Her friend, however, can draw Mummy (complete with eyelashes and necklaces), aliens, cats and dogs, himself and his brother playing in the garden....

Not that I'm envy or anything...

SuperBunny Sat 29-Aug-09 22:49:58

Oh hester, you have my sympathy grin

yama Sat 29-Aug-09 22:56:03

(Thanks Pavlovwink)

Wallace Sun 30-Aug-09 07:25:54

This link is interesting Drawing Development in Children

My just three year old ds2 can just about draw a face but not quite.

Ds1 and dd definitely could draw people at this age.

allaboutme Sun 30-Aug-09 09:16:55

My DS is 4 n4xt month.
He can do scribbles and a wonky circle at a push and thats it.
He HATES drawing and any crafts with a passion though. He would rather sit and stare at the floor than do crafts (with me or at nursery school or anywhere!)
so he will be just drawing wonky circles for a while I guess grin

fanjoforthemammaries7850 Sun 30-Aug-09 09:24:54

my DD is 2.10 and can draw people..but in her developmental assessment recently we were told that was ahead of what can be expected...at least age 4/5. She is behind in other things though (probably has an autistic spectrum disorder).

belgo Sun 30-Aug-09 09:26:46

My dd2 is also four next month. She can scribble, draw some basic shapes, and colour in within the lines. I think she's fairly average for her age. DD1 is a lot better at drawing, she seems to have inherited the artistic streak of dh's family, including the artistic temperament unfortunatelygrin.

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