No coloring books for children

Coloring books are trending, especially for adults. As a child, we remember coloring flowers, cartoons, etc. Many scientists and psychologists claim that coloring books are relaxing and calm. True, it does have positive effects. On adults. But wait! What if coloring is a stressful job for children? Can we say no coloring books for children?

coloring books for children
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Knowing that coloring activity is widely popular with children, it always has been. It might sound foolish to say “Stressful” alongside coloring. Many studies do point out the amazing benefits it has on children.

When a child learns to draw inside the lines, they work on a set of eye-hand coordination, perceptual skill. There are also fine and gross motor skills. Attention building. Focus enhancement. A good list. No denial.

But what if there are more cons than pros expected?

Would you be surprised if your child would draw scenery with the sun rising from the triangular hills and a river flowing? Oh, also there is that house near the river.

Let’s assume that this creative art was passed with DNA.

Moving on.

Do you know Carl Jung, the Father of Modern Analytical Psychology, used to prescribe coloring to calm down his patients? The reason being it is a mindful activity. Coping strategies do improve with a regular structured coloring activity. There is repetition in patterns and brings out familiarity. Hence, a self-soothing technique.

Upon associating coloring books with early childhood development, is there a possibility of binding creativity?

Creating art should bring out a sense of accomplishment, boost self-esteem, and bring out thoughts creatively. If art is a form of expression, isn’t it unfair to judge?

Studies also reveal that coloring books do give a wrong message to kids. Like, “Mine doesn’t look good enough”, “Is this done right way?”. Plus, they tell some things should look in a certain way. Creativity. Kids are forced to have a preconceived notion about the world.

Why color in a ready-to-color apple when you create one of your own? Draw a car, a house, a happy face or flow of hairpin turns. Maybe a castle.

Our children need blank papers and crayons to color. Let them create their masterpieces. Say no to coloring books for children.

If you want to give them more materials? Get them

  • colored papers
  • glue
  • tape
  • finger paints
  • scissors
  • play dough
  • watercolors
  • paintbrushes, droppers, toothbrush, sprayer, kitchen tools, leaves, feathers
  • newspaper and magazines

Children would eventually learn drawing inside the lines. But let’s give them ample time to reach that phase.

One of my last read books Flyaway Boy talk on the same ground of hindering freedom of expression with expectations.

Let the child scribble before filling the expected colors.

Image by Free-Photos from Pixabay and Alicja from Pixabay


25 thoughts on “No coloring books for children”

  1. You are right! Giving them a blank piece of paper and providing them with all accessories like scissors,tape, water colors etc will enhance their ability to perform on their own and help them explore their creativity

  2. Wow this is really interesting and different prespective and I agree creativity should bring a sense of joy and happiness in kids life. they should not feel bounded and should not have a feeling of worry about the end results. since now, I will follow your advice and will avoid buying coloring books.

  3. Agreed! Kids are with full of ideas. Let them explore in the way they want and help them where they want. Now my son also enjoys the paper tearing and sticking activities.

  4. I, somewhat agree with you, Pragnya. We should not limit creativity by giving colouring books to children. And, there can’t be a better canvas than a blank paper sheet. But as you also said that there are some pros to it too, then we can definitely alternate between blank sheet & colouring book depending on the child’s mood.

  5. So apt, for initial stage, coloring books can be challenging and might have their own cons. But yes, they way you have explained it here, is almost like gave me a chill thinking maybe I was wrong to allow my daughter to color in the colouring books..

    • We all grew up with coloring books, it should not give a chill, but yes the creative side does get shaded darkly. Especially when coloring books are dark horses of the publishing industry. Let the child explore his/her own ways rather than imposing rules early on life.

  6. I had stayed away from colouring books for my daughter for long. I just provided her with necessary drawing copy and colours so that she can make her own art, no matter how abstract or meaningless it may look. Now at the age of 4, she makes some wonderful sceneries and explains them with great details


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