Young at Art is a comprehensive book about the nature, value, and impact of art on very young children. Directed towards educators and parents of one to five year olds, Striker's book explains why children's art is not a frill, but the very foundation upon which all later fundamental skills are built. She drives home the idea that encouraging children's artistic growth will have beneficial effects on all other aspects of their emotional and intellectual development.
At the core of this practical guide is the understanding that art is an important tool in teaching young children crucial concepts related to self-expression, reading and writing. As opposed to more structured exercises, such as coloring on dittos and underlining pictures in workbooks, Striker stresses that scribbling and free drawing experiments are the most important art activities a child can engage in; they better prepare children to read independently as they grow.
Young at Art provides descriptions for age-appropriate art activities, tips for carrying them out safely, and helps teachers recognize what a child's art work should look like at each stage of development. With Young at Art, educators will develop realistic expectations of their children's work, learn how to speak to their children about their art, and facilitate skills well beyond their creativity that will benefit children.
"Susan Striker offers ideas for presenting color, shapes, songs, and stories to enrich the art experience. She is careful to offer suggestions that lead to age-appropriate activities . . . A refreshingly different look at childhood artistic creativity, Young at Art [provides] clear, well-substantiated recommendations [that] should make art period less stressful for everyone."—Kate Corby, Michigan State University, Education Review
"Art educator Striker, best known for her popular Anti-Coloring Book series, here outlines numerous ways to help toddlers experience art . . . Young at Art will give larger public libraries and those supporting childhood educatorss an important alternative to the many 'copycat' pattern books on the market. Readers will indeed find value in Striker's comprehensive bibliography of art books and resources for young children, charts for educators about artistic concepts, and ideas on making art connections. Recommended."—Library Journal