All of us want the best for our kids and want to give them a complete education that makes them a better human being. But, most parents stress so much over academics that they forget that kids also need to be involved in extra curricular activities. Arts and crafts is one such neglected segment. Most kids plonk themselves in front of the television or play video games to kill their time. For all round development of your children, you need to involve and encourage them to learn some crafts. Paper craft, such as origami, is one such craft that kids will take an interest in and it is easy for them to learn as well. You need to take up a slightly different approach when teaching them. Simply making them practice the different types of folds in origami and insisting that they master them, is not going to work.
Origami will not only enhance their creativity, but it will also help them develop a hand and eye coordination and increase their concentration levels. Recent research has shown that children who suffer from ADHD or children who have a short attention span show great improvement after learning origami. First, start teaching them the basics and simple paper folding techniques. Let them try making simple origami like a boat or a hat. Teaching them how to make small animals like swan, whale, and rabbit works really well to pique their interest.
You need to remember that children's hand-eye coordination is comparatively slower and less developed than adults. So, you need to wait for them to finish each fold before you proceed with teaching the next fold. If you are teaching a group of small kids, make sure that each kid finishes a particular fold, before you proceed with the next. Some kids might lag behind and it is your duty to see to it that they finish with their peers. One needs to be patient and refrain from hurrying or nagging a slower kid. As mentioned earlier, it is always wise to teach simple and easy origami that can be completed within five to six folds.
Preferably, use origami paper with large patterns. Many parents and teachers try to cut down on the cost and give the kids old newspapers for making origami. This is counter-productive, since newspaper sheets are too thin for making origami crafts and kids don't get very excited with black and white newsprint. On the other hand, giving them colorful and patterned origami paper will arouse their interest. Even with the simplest of folds, you will find that there are kids who make the wrong folds and come up with a different origami altogether. In such a case, do not reprimand the kid in front of other kids. Origami for kids is all about having fun, so you need to be patient and go slow.
The best strategy to teach them is to let them make mistakes. If you see a kid struggling to make a particular fold or crease, do not rush to help him or her. Assisting them too much will undermine their confidence. Another important thing to remember is that, a particular origami object that a child creates is his. You should not take over the project and try to create the perfect version of the object for the child. And lastly, familiarize yourself with all the folds for making an origami object before you attempt to teach it to kids. It would be irresponsible to browse the Internet searching for the next fold while they are left hanging in the middle of the project.
Teaching origami might seem challenging, particularly to those kids who are easily distracted and fidgety. But if you persevere, they are sure to learn this wonderful art and enjoy it too.