First graders seem to enjoy art projects, so give them plenty of opportunities to draw, paint, cut, paste, and sculpt. Keep your art supplies in a special caddy or box that they decorate. Rubbermaid has divided totes that work great, or check the Dollar Store for totes.
Begin to collect art books and craft supplies from yard sales. You would be amazed at what people do not want anymore. Try to stay away from having your child color in coloring books. Encourage them to be creative by drawing and coloring their own pictures. There are books that have the beginning of a picture and your child completes it by drawing in the majority. This is good for kids who constantly say, “I don’t know what to draw.”
It is a good idea to always have plenty of plain white paper, colored paper, crayons, paints, scissors, glue, pipe cleaners, tape, sidewalk chalk, glue sticks, old magazines, homemade play dough… Put out some supplies with no instructions to follow. Tell your child to create as they wish. Watch out for a burst of creativity. If you have miscellaneous items such as fabric, yarn, cardboard, beads, sequins, spangles, googly eyes and such, put them out too. The more the merrier.