children, art and illustrations

Children love to express their feelings and display their imagination through art activities and illustrations. Tales are a fantastic source for children to start their relationship with art and to find illustrations that help them to navigate through an adventure’s content and characters. But how important are art and illustrations to child development?

Let’s talk about solving problems with art!

When children face a blank canvas, they must make several decisions, such as adding lines, color, and volume. Plus, children confront the challenge of outlining each part of their project. For instance, when drawing a park, they must consider how to draw the ground, sky, along with some other objects while projecting an interlinked idea of events and emotions.

In every art project, children will need to assert what is the object of their interest and how this subject interacts with its surroundings. While accomplishing a simple task such as drawing a three, children will begin to face doubts and make decisions to discern distance, perspective, space, and harmony.

colorful girl
little girl covered in colorful paint

Several studies have addressed the importance of color in children’s development. In the article ‘Children’s Emotional Associations with Colors’ by Boyatzis & Varghese (1994)’, scientists found a correlation between positive and negative emotions when children use specific colors. In this study, measures such as brightness show different reactions.  

In this regard, illustrations show kids how simple strokes can shape animals, humans, insects, and objects. A mix that includes children, art, and illustrations can turn into a fantastic way to educate and conceive new ideas.

Illustrations also help children to differentiate clear geometrical shapes, count sides and corners, and reveal the importance of few but decisive details to convey emotions, which might result hard for children when using only words.

Children hand-Eye coordination

Doing a new art project involves the proper handling of tools. Children will exercise their motor skills by taking care of the canvas and art materials.

They will have to resort to patience to draw straight lines, use sharp instruments like scissors, and be mindful of how particular tones or combinations of colors can create distinctive visual effects.

Children’s hands will be prepared to write and follow more delicate and patient tasks. According to Renee Phillips, Director of Manhattan Arts International, art also reduces stress, heals emotional burdens from trauma and loss, and makes individuals appreciate other people’s expressions and individuality.

Therefore, activity sheets are an effective way to assist children with their development. These sheets will offer a fun challenge to solve. Children will have to review their previous readings to find out clues within the illustrations to complete the tasks at hand.

Kids might see the world with different eyes. They still understand how machines and social patterns work while filling the gaps with imagination and personal thoughts. Kids’ brains make new connections in this stage by adding colors, signs, sounds, and more.

Engaging in art projects and having contact with illustrations will increase their creativity and bring new questions, which means new vocabulary, improving their awareness, and giving them more alternatives to describe their experiences.

Furthermore, books for children that include illustrations bring a myriad of new fun concepts for children, portraying a mix of space, time, and wild colors that stimulates their visual skills; and if these are included in an adventure, they can deliver more enjoyment and lead children to make associations with characters, their personalities, and motives.

By Eduardo Guillen

Cancer is a disease that makes victims and their families rethink their priorities. In this scenario, thinking about the future always comes with anxiety because a patient needs to focus on the present and the fight they are facing.

After treatment, many survivors continue with their lives and return to mid and long-term activities such as studying, saving money, investing time in a relationship, and looking for new developmental opportunities. In contrast, others prefer to concentrate on the day-to-day and choose short-term endeavors because of their fear of relapse.

An excellent way to deal with anxiety about the future and obtain more confidence to make long-term plans is by joining support groups and counseling where the survivor can meet with people who have similar stories and experiences.

Also, the survivor can perform activities such as exercising, art, playing video games, and reading books to help tremendously with their mental recovery. Literature is well known to open doors to new worlds and have experiences that anyone can relive countless times.

Each patient chooses a different path

However, how patients deal with cancer during and after their treatment is something that they need to determine themselves, and the family needs to respect that. This doesn’t mean the patient’s decisions cannot change and eventually turn into long-term plans, but it is a process that might take time.

As many people have experienced, cancer is a family illness, not an individual one. For this reason, a patient needs to feel that their family supports their view of the world and the approach they have towards it. Many different feelings can go through the mind of a cancer patient, and the family might discover itself changing their view altogether.

If these feelings are not addressed the consequences might affect cancer patients and eventually compromise their general health condition.

Combating anxiety for the future must be faced in the right way

It is also essential the patient has proper tools for managing their emotions. Due to psychological stress, it is crucial to avoid harmful ideas and negative thoughts that might complicate the cancer treatment. A healthy activity to cope with those ideas is to keep a journal of daily thoughts, create stories, or perhaps even create a fictional character a patient can use to channel their feelings.

Some patients find calm when sharing their thoughts with other patients or people who have cancer and have taken new steps in their life.

For example, the talented SNL actress Vanessa Bayer, who had lymphoblastic leukemia when she was 15 years old, mentioned that her illness inspired her love for comedy, making her take steps toward that direction, turning this personal therapy into a career years later.

Afraid of Knowing

Former patients of cancer might also feel anxiety because of a fear of relapse. If these feelings are not addressed, the consequences might affect their lives and eventually compromise their general health condition.

The best option is to visit a therapist (psychologist) because many patients are reluctant to share their thoughts with their family and close friends. The therapist will also help them deal with excessive concerns about their health. We can reduce anxiety effectively if we trust professional help and let negative thoughts disappear.

Remember, fear is of no use if it is not to be overcome. There are plenty of alternatives and resources that can help patients and survivors of cancer to live a life without anxiety and instead choose openness to the future.

By Eduardo Guillen

Can kids be cruel? Most definitely. However, it is important to remember that their cruelty is often based not on any inherent evil, but on the bully’s experience at home, a lack of proper parenting, or a lack of empathy towards others.

Definition of Bullying



Bullying is the exertion of power from one person or a group to another, often in the form of physical or psychological violence. Bullies take advantage of any power imbalance, whether that be by strength, popularity, social status, or other factors.

There is also a proclivity in some kids to be more violent than others. Here, we need to clarify that there is a difference between being violent versus being mean or rude. Violence is exerted to hurt another person, whether physically or mentally while being mean or rude is lacking manners with little to no power imbalance involved.

Bullies can use a multitude of resources to harass others, such as verbal and nonverbal messages, social rejection, stigmatization, and nowadays, even social media, aka cyberbullying.

Why Do Children Bully?

According to Trudy Ludwig, in her book Confessions of a Former Bully, a bully is a child who displays bad behavior. It is important to separate the bad behavior from the intrinsic identity of the child and to stop considering bullies as inherently bad people. Bullying often occurs because something is occurring at home or around the area of influence where the ‘bully’ lives.

However, the reasons why kids engage in bullying are usually to gain social status, to maintain power and control, or get attention from their peers. This often occurs when there is no supervision.

Years ago, bullying was considered an action performed by kids filled with insecurities. While this has truth to it, there is a lot of evidence in academic research that suggests that also bullying occurs due to a child’s desire to achieve popularity.

Furthermore, we need to ask ourselves why bullies have this desperate need for attention. Usually, it is because they have seen similar interactions within their social groups and feel the need to emulate such behavior.

The Victims


The victims of bullying vary, but these kids are usually the ones considered special or different from the rest of the class. In this group, we can include creative or intelligent students, isolated children, children with a different appearance, children with a disability, and children from a different religion.

Also, it is important to note that the bully and bullied can change according to the situation. For example, a child that is not as smart as the rest of the students can be bullied for being deficient in math or English, while popular kids could be victims of other bullies if they represent an attention threat.

How to Help



To reduce bullying in schools, adults need to be aware of the situation and intervene consistently; not only once, but every time it happens. Adults also must hone their senses to detect when a real case of bullying, not rudeness, happens and act immediately and accordingly.

Finally, teachers and parents must not consider bullying as something that ‘just happens’ during childhood and teenage years.

Adults need to identify the children involved in bullying incidents, identify needs, create a culture of comprehension and kindness, monitor the areas where bullying has occurred, and create dynamics where professionals can assess these situations to improve kids’ social behavior.


By Eduardo Guillen.

There is one simple and effective way to bring smiles to children while teaching them lessons about life and boosting their confidence levels, and it is by reading books.

Children love the interaction, communication, and roleplay. They play being an astronaut, a policeman, a doctor, a trashman, and dozens of different people thanks to their powerful imagination.

Reading helps them project their ego and gain confidence to interact with society.

Thanks to books, children learn about interactions with family and close friends, discover and develop social skills, learn new words, and identify new behavioral patterns. In that way, children can effectively convey confidence, doubt, fear, bravery, and several other emotions.

The effective management of these social skills will determine in a great measure their success in the future.


Moreover, books teach children new words and logic to communicate their needs while learning more complex subjects.

Stories with simple and complex characters show children that every person is physically and mentally different and can change their minds under different circumstances.

Books and their stories are the first steps into exploring and later comprehending daily life.

Moreover, books teach children new words and logic to communicate their needs while learning more complex matters.

Confidence and Learning in Children 

When children start reading, their confidence gets boosted because they control the time and rhythm of the story while discovering the characters and plot of the story.

In addition, the pictures allow children to associate colors and shapes with symbols, cultural references, social customs, and norms (like etiquette and transit signs). They also show them new places and past, present, and future possibilities.

Furthermore, some stories can teach life lessons to children, such as sharing with friends and siblings or obeying the parents, and not being lazy or offensive.

Children learn by reading and associate those lessons with their life occurrences.


Books Heal and Bring Smiles

Books are also great beacons to examine and heal traumas such as illness, death, violence, and its counterpart health, life, and peace. Children can explore these and more subjects through fiction in a playful way, thanks to the art of storytelling.

In this context, African American author Rick Daniels explores topics such as bullying and cancer, which brings children to wonder if there is a reason for all their pain and why they are going through it.

Likewise, it shows that children who suffer from these difficulties are still part of a society that needs them and wants them to be active in their development.

Through books, children can also learn about themselves, their defects, and virtues, and how to work upon their behavior. Because reading is a relaxing activity, children can use books to cope and find solace from everyday’ s struggles and challenges.

Also, a book can provide resources for children to talk and interact with others, but it can also give them new knowledge about infinite subjects, therefore, surprising them with discovery after flipping a page.

Reading is an essential part of child development; it encourages them to go forward, make friends, and discover themselves. In addition, books can reveal how your children react to particular situations allowing you to provide explanations and guidance.

Remember that when life hits and problems persist, a book will help your children grow, but it will also bring their favorite characters back to life to heal them with a smile.


By Eduardo Guillen


A book can provide resources for children to talk and interact with others, but it can also give them new knowledge about infinite subjects, therefore, surprising them with discovery after flipping a page.