Tuesday, November 2, 2010

Boys Draw in Verbs

It's not easy being a boy in this house.

Wait-- let me clarify.

Having two older sisters, both with great artistic abilities, have made our son feel-- less gifted in the art department.

I'm not saying that only drawing/painting is art.  But, as children, I think drawing and painting are two of the earliest exposures to expressive art.

It wasn't until I listened to a talk by Andrew Pudewa, "Teaching Boys and Other Children Who Would Rather Make Forts All Day," which was about gender differences and learning, that I realized a startling and very true fact.

Young girls, primarily, draw nouns.

They draw houses, flowers, rainbows, horses, horses, and more horses. :)

Young boys, primarily, draw verbs.

They draw things exploding, flaming, flying, diving, driving.

It is way more difficult to draw a verb than it is to draw a noun.

Now I understand why my son can never simply show me his picture.

He has to tell me about all the action that is going on.

There is a grand battle of epic proportions being depicted (in his one color of choice) and there is just no way for him to show all that he has imagined.

So mommy (or perhaps) a teacher says, "That's great... what is it?"
And our sons believe that they can't draw because no one can recognize the thermal, fireball of death bursting from the Uzi.

They believe that only "good" art is recognizable, static, shapes like a house, sun, moon, and standing-very-still pony.

How liberating to our sons to be told, "You are a great artist! You... you draw--


All comments are tax-deductible :)


Michelle said...

That is so true. Although my son can draw a really great face. he even puts eyebrows on it. But I think its still a verb. it's an angry eyebrow. LOL. His big new thing is blue's clues (well he's four so what do I expect) so he goes around drawing "clues". I think that has made him more of a noun draw-er, but I agree. boys do draw verbs! Great point lainie :)

Becca said...

This was great to read!!! My 7 y.o. boy just started to enjoy drawing (the first step in making peace with a pencil), and his pictures are filled with laser beams and bursting things and shooting things and vehicles and outer space stuff. They look quite different from those of his two sisters. If your son would like a "wordless pen pal" (sending action pictures back and forth with no words required) e-mail me!

Edie said...

Is there a link to be able to listen to that talk by Andrew Pudewa? I'd love to hear it. Such a great point to ponder, one more way that boys are soooo different from girls.

Lainie said...

Edie... if you can quick email me.. the link I have to a YOUSENDIT file is good until the 8th. I'll send it to you so you can download from there.

Kathi @ A Mother's Prayers said...

True story.

I have the princess ballerinas and WWII pictures hanging on the fridge to prove it!


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