The Drawing Path for Children
by Bob Steele
Drawing Network Publications, 2011
$22.00, coilbound, 178 pp.
The Drawing Path for Children is an invaluable resource for educators or parents of young children. Author Bob Steele, founder of the Drawing Network and Professor Emeritus at UBC, explains that although drawing is the most effective and sophisticated mode of communication for young children, it is underused and undervalued in contemporary curriculum. This book explores drawing-as-language and challenges readers to rethink the communicative capability of small children; this is because uncoded language (i.e., drawing) affords young children a medium of expression that is more sophisticated and explicit than their ability in coded language (i.e., speaking, reading, writing).
To illustrate the importance of its development and instruction, Steele presents his audience with over eighty children’s drawings. The artwork features line drawing and the book is entirely black-and-white. All pieces selected are rich in detail and emotion, but the works range in content and complexity from innocent to aggressive. If you want to reflect on and reconsider what you feel truly impacts early language development, pile up some children’s drawings, open up The Drawing Path for Children, and enjoy the simple-yet-stunning ideas of Steele. The way you look at children’s art will be forever altered. Highly recommended.
Review by Kimberley Siwak.
This review is from Canadian Teacher Magazine’s Sept/Oct 2013 issue.