If you have small children, you will end up seeing the walls of your house fill with scribbles, signs, and drawings by the children who don’t understand why they cannot make use of that “canvas” that is so big and so white to reflect their best creative ideas.
Almost all children end up painting the walls of their home at some time or other, whether with materials that can easily be removed, such as pencil or chalk, or with others that you will just have to paint over if they are to be completely removed, such as permanent marker pens.
Why does this happen? In the first place, because until you explain it to them, young children don’t understand that painting on the walls is wrong. They are used to experimenting and exploring their curiosity with the means available to them, and one of these possibilities is drawing with their favorite colors everywhere, whether on the walls, the furniture, or on the floor.
Until they see your horrified expression when they run happily to show you their latest work of art, they do not understand that they have done anything wrong. When scolding him therefore (especially if it is the first time) you should take into account that he didn’t do it to annoy you or to ruin the paint in the lounge, he really didn’t know that he was doing anything wrong.
Moreover, he may have seen you one day painting a sign or mark on the wall for hanging a picture or putting up a shelf. Or you may even have drawn something on the wall to decorate it or he has seen you painting it. Naturally he does not understand the difference between what you have done and what he has done. Because of this, if your child has painted on the walls, you shouldn’t get furious but act as follows:
- Explain clearly what he has done wrong and why.
- Do not scold or punish him as he really didn’t know he was doing anything wrong. On the other hand, once you have explained the problem to him and you can see he has understood, the second time you should get angry as this time he is doing it in the knowledge that you have forbidden it and he is challenging you to see how you react. The best thing in these cases is for you to make him clean up what he has spoiled so that he learns his lesson.
- Perhaps the problem is that he didn’t have suitable drawing material to hand. This is why you must always leave sheets of paper, cards, or a blackboard ready for him so that he can draw and paint whenever he feels like it.
- Explain clearly where he can paint and where it is not allowed so that he will know how to act next time.