Hi! We are Samaria and Hadley and we love all things photography and art – kids’ classes, non-cheesy family photos, you name it! We believe that experimenting and creating with cameras is a great way for kids to learn. It teaches kids to view their surroundings in new ways while also allowing them to learn how to respect and be responsible with breakable tools. Here are some tips, tricks, and ideas to try with your kids!
Even if it’s just outside your house, getting out into the light is the best place to start.
Here are a few places we love to take photos with kids:
Lewis Creek Park / Bellevue Botanical Garden / KidsQuest Children’s Museum and the Bellevue Library which also has a big open park next to it. These places have lots of great light even on cloudy days, interesting lines to practice composition, bird sightings, slugs, thick forest shade, and open-shaded greenery galore!
LET THEM USE THE “BIG” CAMERA:
For kids that are old enough to keep a camera around their neck, trust them! Kids ages 5+ is our usual age for being able to hold cameras themselves. Make sure they know that your camera is a tool that’s super breakable, but that you trust them to be more mindful of their movements while it’s around their necks and to be extra careful with it at all times.
In all of our photo/art classes, we’ve never had a kid damage a camera. They know we trust them and honestly, they are probably more careful with them than we are. Phones are also perfect for kids to practice with if you’d feel more comfortable starting there.
3. GIVE THEM A GOAL:
Whether it’s a timed challenge to find and photograph as many green things as possible in 10 minutes or a slower video prompt where they record an audio/visual piece to represent an emotion they feel. It’s so fun to see how much kids love to be challenged while creating. They will AMAZE YOU with the art they make from a simple invitation to create.
TALK ABOUT THEIR WORK!
Ask open questions about how they felt the process went and be vocal about your own thoughts and what you notice and love about their creations. This is a perfect opportunity to encourage your child to be thoughtful about their work. Ask them if they are happy with how an image turned out or if there is anything they are frustrated about? They might not know how to share what it is they don’t like, they might just know that it didn’t turn out how they wanted, this allows you to problem solve together and try again.
ENCOURAGE OPEN CREATIVITY:
As you talk about their work and they get more time to experiment and create – you will notice their imaginations begin to expand! Follow these bursts of creativity and allow your child to test out their ideas. Sometimes their ideas might work out and other times it won’t and that is okay, it is all part of the process.
Thanks so much to KidsQuest for having us do this series for you all… next month we will be sharing some simple activities to help teach your kids about how cameras work!
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