Descriptive pictures - draw what you hear (4 years and older)

Lead your child on a listening and drawing adventure


Home Learning

You will need

For this activity, you will need just a piece of paper and drawing or colouring materials.

What to do

Start by challenging your child to draw whatever you say, then start describing an image to them.

For example:

  • I can see a road, with 2 cars on it.
  • One car is blue, and another car is red.
  • There is also a house with 4 windows in it.
  • Outside the house is mum, and inside the house is dad.

To make the activity more challenging, provide more specific instructions, such as ‘his t-shirt is orange, and his trousers are black’.

A child's drawing

Learning outcomes

A very simple activity, this learning tip can help the child develop the following skills:

  • Listening and communication:
    • Listening is a key part of communication. During this activity, the child has to listen carefully to what you say, just in case they miss any information.
    • If they do miss some information, you can encourage them to ask you about it (e.g. ‘what colour was his hair?’). Thus, you are encouraging them to use existing vocabulary in a new way and build their understanding of the world.
  • Fine Motor Development:
    • By practising drawing using the proper grip, you’re encouraging the child to develop skills they’ll use for early writing skills and more.
    • Hand-eye coordination is also crucial, as the child needs to use their eyes to see how the different things relate to each other, then use their hands to draw (‘for example, the house is next to the road’)
  • Mathematical Concepts:
    • Descriptions like these use a lot of mathematical concepts. Some of these include:
    • Knowing the names of the different colours, and finding the right crayon to match.
    • Knowing shapes (for example, the house is a square).
    • Knowing positioning (‘next to’).
    • Knowing capacities (big or small, wide and thin).

This activity is best for children of a kindergarten age, who have already developed their listening and mark making skills. For any child that is younger, perhaps sit with them as they draw, encouraging them to draw different items, but appreciating whatever they choose to do.