Remember coloring books? I used to sit and color for hours when I was a kid. I still love the fresh possiblity of a brand new coloring book, its clean pages just waiting to be filled with bright colors of my choosing. Coloring books aren't a thing of the past, and nowadays you can find awesome coloring books with very detailed and technical pictures, as well as educational themes that teach history and other concepts. Let's turn off the TV and hand a kid a coloring book instead.

Rediscover Coloring Books

With the world of computers, children are learning to do everything on them. What ever happened to coloring books? They seem to have faded into the woodwork as technology has taken the forefront. Teach your children a love for good old-fashioned coloring again. Buy them a coloring book.

The basic concept of coloring books has not changed in the last twenty years or so. They are books filled with outlined pictures that children use crayons to decorate. In fact, the whole point of crayons was for coloring books. Crayons were less messy than paints and they made different types of lines depending on how you held them. If you used the point, the line was thin and bold. If you used the side of the crayon, the line was wide and lighter. The main rule that teachers wanted children to learn was how to stay inside the lines. As long as you stayed within the confines of the pre-printed picture, you could do anything.

Coloring books suspended the concept of reality. You may have a picture of a house and a sun on the page, but who said that the sun had to be yellow? With the invention of new colors beyond the basic eight or ten colors came a whole new world of color for kids. The sun could be an orange-red and the sky could be periwinkle or midnight blue instead of the standard light blue or blue. The grass could be forest green or lime green instead of light or dark green. Pictures of ordinary animals and objects became extraordinary with a little bold coloring. Crayons were the paint and the coloring book was the canvas for creating new works of art.

Coloring books are teaching tools. Since kids weren’t allowed to write in their textbooks at school, companies created coloring books that also taught the letters of the alphabet and shapes. As the child looks at the letter “T” and makes the sound, they can also trace the letter with a crayon. On a coloring book page, you could draw anything else you wanted. It was yours and only yours to do with as you wished. Coloring books tell bible stories and nursery rhymes. They also have coloring books for holidays where you can color Easter eggs and Christmas trees and cut them out for decorations. Coloring books became functional.

Now, children have no-line coloring books. With these, the children have a page where they are supposed to draw the object themselves, like a butterfly, and then color it. They can be the picture creator and its painter. Story books have become coloring books. A child can learn to read a classic story and color the pictures when they are through. The possibilities are endless, but the fun of drawing is there, too. You don’t even have to stay inside the lines if you don’t want to.

Coloring books are larger now, too. I have seen coloring books as tall as a small child. They contain poster-sized pictures of people and places. When I was in Sunday school as a child, I won a wall sized nativity map that I could color and then hang on my wall to display. Coloring books have come a long way, but are they being replaced by video games and painting programs on the computer? As long as parents keep buying them, they will have an important place in the lives of children.

Bring back the love of coloring to your child. Buy them a coloring book today. Computers will still be there when they get older. For now, let them explore for themselves through the pages of a coloring book.
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