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amother









  
Post Posted: Mon, Mar 27 2006, 9:47 pm       Post subject: drawing sad faces
My 5 year old son draws sad faces on all his people. Does anyone here know psychology and have an answer if this is a developmental thing or does it have a deeper meaning?
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youngmom









  
Post Posted: Mon, Mar 27 2006, 9:50 pm       Post subject: re: drawing sad faces
sorry, a bit off topic but my parents always tell me how I used to draw cockroaches (sp?). what does that say about me? hmmmmmm..... Confused
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amother









  
Post Posted: Mon, Mar 27 2006, 10:26 pm       Post subject: re: drawing sad faces
It definitely has meaning and don't believe anyone who says it doesn't. If all his faces are sad something must bother your child. One kid in my sons kindergarten class always drew gray drab days with gray skies and a miniature sun and a dark overcast, his father was NEVER home except weekends for business, was overseas all week, funny thing was at the end of the year the father had got a new schedule and the kid was finally making "normal" pictures. Some things I do remember from psych classes, sun represents the dad- the bigger, higher, brighter means more power and influence and good relationship. Trees, if they have roots means the child feels a deep family connection, if it doesn't or has like that owl/squirrel hole, means something is empty with family connection. The door to the house, doorknob vs no doorknob means they let you in to their life vs not. Lots of windows-open person, and v.v. A path leading up to house also means inviting pple in, outgoing person. A person with hands hidden behind back or in pockets mean they are not showing how they feel to people. The class I learned this in was so amazing and interesting, there was lots more but its been a while. Other psych pple feel free to correct me if I erred. Teachers in younger grades that do a lot of coloring time also get to notice when a child's art work is way off "normal" and something must be up with them or in their home.
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Crayon210









  
Post Posted: Mon, Mar 27 2006, 10:28 pm       Post subject:
I wonder how many posters are now going to check if there are doorknobs and windows on their kids' drawings...

I hope there's a disclaimer to this...sometimes a cigar is just a cigar.
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Dip the apple in the honey...
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amother









  
Post Posted: Mon, Mar 27 2006, 11:17 pm       Post subject: re: drawing sad faces
The teacher was concerned..The child drew everything with a black crayon.

The teacher contacted the mother..

The mother peeked into the classroom one day during coloring time..

What she saw...

All the kids grabbing the colorful crayons..Quietly the girl reaches out for the only color left on the table..The Black crayon!
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jewgal84









  
Post Posted: Mon, Mar 27 2006, 11:23 pm       Post subject: re: drawing sad faces
Amother, why was that posted anonymously?!

I heared a different version!

Mom was concerned bc child always drew with a black crayon so she went to get help.

After numerous visits with the social worker, they doscovered what it was.

And visit # 6, social worker takes out a box of crayons and asks child to draw a pic.

Child exclaims (excitedly) oh great! At school all we have left in our crayon box are the black and brown ones!!

Go figure...
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jewgal84









  
Post Posted: Mon, Mar 27 2006, 11:26 pm       Post subject: Re: drawing sad faces
amother wrote:
My 5 year old son draws sad faces on all his people. Does anyone here know psychology and have an answer if this is a developmental thing or does it have a deeper meaning?


Have you asked him what his pic is? Maybe he will explain it to you.

Some children see and then draw differently.

I can't truly believe that at 5 yr old a child can draw his emotions,they'sd probably want to rip the paper instead.
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happymom









  
Post Posted: Mon, Mar 27 2006, 11:28 pm       Post subject: re: drawing sad faces
Quote:
I can't truly believe that at 5 yr old a child can draw his emotions,they'sd probably want to rip the paper instead.


I believe it[/code]
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Mandy









  
Post Posted: Mon, Mar 27 2006, 11:29 pm       Post subject: re: drawing sad faces
Quote:
Some things I do remember from psych classes, sun represents the dad- the bigger, higher, brighter means more power and influence and good relationship. Trees, if they have roots means the child feels a deep family connection, if it doesn't or has like that owl/squirrel hole, means something is empty with family connection. The door to the house, doorknob vs no doorknob means they let you in to their life vs not. Lots of windows-open person, and v.v. A path leading up to house also means inviting pple in, outgoing person. A person with hands hidden behind back or in pockets mean they are not showing how they feel to people. The class I learned this in was so amazing and interesting, there was lots more but its been a while. Other psych pple feel free to correct me if I erred. Teachers in younger grades that do a lot of coloring time also get to notice when a child's art work is way off "normal" and something must be up with them or in their home.


OY. Freudian projectives have very very limited use and have not held up statistically at all. They have NO PROVEN VALIDITY and most psychologists are now discouraged from using them.

Drawings are only useful to start conversations ( establish rapport) and with children who are not very verbal for whatever reason. You cannot diagnose from pictures and everyone agrees on this point- you must have other evidence of disordered thoughts, etc. Otherwise, a sun is just a sun and a door is just a door.

Is the little boy fighting ? Is he sad himself a lot ? Does he cry or tantrum frequently ? What does he say about his pictures ? Is his behavior with peers or adults abnormal ? Are there any major life changes now ? Does he know how to draw happy faces ?
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Mandy, aka Tom Riddle
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jewgal84









  
Post Posted: Mon, Mar 27 2006, 11:30 pm       Post subject: re: drawing sad faces
Quote:
Drawings are only useful to start conversations ( establish rapport) and with children who are not very verbal for whatever reason. You cannot diagnose from pictures and everyone agrees on this point- you must have other evidence of disordered thoughts, etc. Otherwise, a sun is just a sun and a door is just a door.


I truly second that!
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amother









  
Post Posted: Mon, Mar 27 2006, 11:36 pm       Post subject: Re: re: drawing sad faces
Mandy wrote:

OY. Freudian projectives have very very limited use and have not held up statistically at all. They have NO PROVEN VALIDITY and most psychologists are now discouraged from using them.

Drawings are only useful to start conversations ( establish rapport) and with children who are not very verbal for whatever reason. You cannot diagnose from pictures and everyone agrees on this point- you must have other evidence of disordered thoughts, etc. Otherwise, a sun is just a sun and a door is just a door.

Is the little boy fighting ? Is he sad himself a lot ? Does he cry or tantrum frequently ? What does he say about his pictures ? Is his behavior with peers or adults abnormal ? Are there any major life changes now ? Does he know how to draw happy faces ?


But Mandy if a small child had a fixation on say violent drawings would you say something was up with the kid, if all the pictures were crying, then, I think its totally whacked to use pictures to diagnose, but if you should happen to observe something strange in the pictures you know to delve deeper and not just dismiss it.
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jewgal84









  
Post Posted: Mon, Mar 27 2006, 11:38 pm       Post subject: re: drawing sad faces
And a child who only draws cheerful faces, can you assume there is nothing wrong in his life?
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amother









  
Post Posted: Mon, Mar 27 2006, 11:41 pm       Post subject: re: drawing sad faces
Jewgal, when your child draws people what kind of mouth do they draw?
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LubavitchLeah









  
Post Posted: Mon, Mar 27 2006, 11:41 pm       Post subject: re: drawing sad faces
Children cannot articulate their feelings , like we can YET they feel them internaly no differently/experience them. If a child is anxious, it often manifests , for example in bedwetting, or wanting to miss school. If a child is angry, he may act out etc etc. 5 year olds cannot always make sense of their experiences or articulate them. For example when I worked in child welfare, the vast majority of children, who were in foster care, tended to draw themselves as very small, and usualy used dark colors, no flowers or life, so to speak in their art (studies of street childrens art you also find similar stuff) and mostly these kids dont show HAPPY smily faces in their pics. I could go on and on but I definitly would try connecting with my child, alone time, out time only 2 of you etc etc, try to see if their is some underlying stuff. One can ask "when did she start to draw more morose faces, what was different in her life then? Did she start a new school, move to a new house, lose a loved one, did you go to work longer hours, was there a new baby etc etc etc.
One must remember that it is a Great therapy, so to speak, art helps a child of that age process things, in the same was as adults we share them with friends.
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May we merit MASHIACH NOW!
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Mandy









  
Post Posted: Mon, Mar 27 2006, 11:44 pm       Post subject: re: drawing sad faces
Okay, if the child had violent pictures and everyone was crying, I would use the drawings as a starting point to talk to the child, to do an informal interview. I would wonder if there was something going on that I don't know about. I would also wonder if maybe the child was watching a lot of violent videos. I would never write anything in a report or say anything to a parent just on the base of pictures alone, only if you also have other evidence.

But you are correct, in that consistently atypical drawings could be a point for further inquiry.
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jewgal84









  
Post Posted: Mon, Mar 27 2006, 11:45 pm       Post subject: Re: re: drawing sad faces
amother wrote:
Jewgal, when your child draws people what kind of mouth do they draw?


my children are not at the age of drawing. But I have students who draw "real" smile or straight lines for mouths. I have students who draw their mouths on the side of their faces and there are those who make frowns too
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Crayon210









  
Post Posted: Mon, Mar 27 2006, 11:45 pm       Post subject: Re: re: drawing sad faces
amother wrote:
Jewgal, when your child draws people what kind of mouth do they draw?


Jewgal has mentioned that she's been married just over a year...
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Crayon210









  
Post Posted: Mon, Mar 27 2006, 11:47 pm       Post subject:
When I was younger, I drew a picture of my mother with green hair like Marge Simpson and my father with a conehead yarmulke and one sibling holding the other like a football.

Does that explain anything to any of the big psychologists here?
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Tefila









  
Post Posted: Mon, Mar 27 2006, 11:56 pm       Post subject: re: drawing sad faces
If the child was 3 perhaps it's normal perhaps not.
But older on all the pictures gets one thinking Confused
though it doesn't have to be something drastic.

I know of a child 6 yrs old in all drawings her of outdoors there never was a sun Confused I questioned this child and she said a sun is happy it's never happy in my pictures Sad

I failed to ever extract what she was so sad about. Though I did bring it up with her parents. Sad


Last edited by Tefila on Mon, Mar 27 2006, 11:56 pm; edited 1 time in total
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amother









  
Post Posted: Mon, Mar 27 2006, 11:56 pm       Post subject: Re: re: drawing sad faces
jewgal84 wrote:
amother wrote:
Jewgal, when your child draws people what kind of mouth do they draw?


my children are not at the age of drawing. But I have students who draw "real" smile or straight lines for mouths. I have students who draw their mouths on the side of their faces and there are those who make frowns too


Do you think most students draw smiles or straight lines for mouths? Or are frowns the norm too?

Actually a teacher once told me a child in her class kept drawing these horrible pictures all year, then towards the end of the school year mentioned at lunch something about his father hitting his mother, just like you keep an eye out for children who come in to school with bruises, sure they could have fell off the bike and hit their face, but then again maybe not, drawings that are atypical should render that you pay extra attention to that child to make sure everything is indeed okay.
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