This post is sponsored by Kidspot and I received payment for the review.
A kids’ program about a sweet monster named Squiglet who loves to squiggle – how could SquiggleMum resist a review?! Get Squiggling airs on the CBeebies channel, weekdays at 8:30am.
Squiglet loves to draw with his squiggle sticks. His illustrations transform the white world around him into a colourful and magical place, where characters jump off the page and come to life. Need to find some buried treasure? Squiglet can squiggle you a spade. Need to cross a crocodile-infested moat? Squiglet can squiggle you a boat. Need to get somewhere far away? Squiglet can even squiggle you a rocket!
Creative and Educational Consultant Brian Neish, shares what children may pick up from Get Squiggling:
- Knowledge about colour and colour combination
- Ways to describe drawn lines
- Knowledge about how to draw particular line types
- An understanding of the way drawing can be used to represent imaginative thought
- An understanding of the way lines can be used to create shape, form and space in an organised and representational manner
- Knowledge about a range of both familiar and unfamiliar animals and characters
- Knowledge about a range of places and environments, including their unique features
Both of my kids enjoy watching the program. It is well pitched for my two year old, but it is my five year old who loves to draw. A program like Get Squiggling can be a great springboard into other creative activities from which you can reinforce the learning outlined above. Children can only learn so much by watching – it is in the doing that pathways are formed in the brain, rich language is used in conversation, fine motor skills are developed, and true learning occurs.
Here are some ideas to help you with the doing, after the viewing!
- Make up some mini-squiggle kits so that the kids can draw easily anywhere. A small notepad and 4xcrayon pack in a ziploc bag can be kept in your handbag for when you are on the go. Try: playing a squiggling game! Draw a few lines and encourage your child to turn it into a picture. What could it be? (Ah yes, some of you remember Mr Squiggle…)
- Provide materials for squiggling outdoors. Children’s imaginations seem to soar outside! Give your child a clipboard stocked with paper, and a cup of crayons. Try: encouraging your child to draw what they see, as well as what they imagine. Use lots of descriptive language when talking with your child.
- Think BIG! Try: using large sheets of butcher’s paper on the floor (or a large box opened out flat) to help your child draw an imaginary world. “Is there a jungle? Are there rivers? Who lives in this house? Don’t fall into the quicksand…!”
- Squiggle a book together. A simple recount is a great format for young kids and is a valuable language and memory activity. Try: squiggling about an experience you have (very) recently had together. Write a simple sentence on each page, and encourage your child to illustrate it. “I went to the shops with Mummy. I saw cornflakes. I saw apples. I saw milk. I saw pizza. I saw lots of trolleys!”
- Different mediums produce different results. Provide your child with more than just crayons. Let them experience pencils, felt pens, chalk, oil pastels, charcoal and more. Try: drawing on the concrete with chalk.
If followed up with creative opportunities at home, Get Squiggling can be a useful and enjoyable program.
SquiggleKids rating: 4 stars. “I like Squiglet. He’s fun and he likes to draw and so do I. I like how he imagines things and draws whatever he thinks about.” The kids also enjoy singing along with the opening song!
SquiggleMum rating: 3 stars (when used in conjunction with real opportunities for drawing). I prefer more emphasis on process over product, but the program is enjoyable and it has inspired us to get squiggling together!
Do your kids like to squiggle? What other ideas do you have for encouraging drawing at home? Leave a comment below!