Have you seen any of the Roll A Dice art games that are popping up all over? The idea is simple, rolling a die gives you a number, 1-6, that corresponds to something to draw in your picture. Most of them require about five or six turns to create your work of art! These games allow for multiple people to be making the “same” art from the same instruction sheet, but end up with wildly different pictures. They come in a wide variety of themes to go along with holidays, art lessons, or many other choices.
Why I like it
As an occupational therapist, I like Roll A Dice Art games for several reasons. One is that it is a low-stress drawing game that you can play with any child. Even one who doesn’t really like to draw. Whenever I play with a child, I make sure I am drawing too. I roll the die and then try to draw whatever I get. I do NOT try to be perfect about it. I want the child I am working with to see that I can also make mistakes and that my finished drawing isn’t any better than theirs.
Learning to draw helps develop fine motor skills, and gives kids a different way to communicate. Not everyone is an artist, but everyone should get a chance to make art. I also like that they come in a wide variety of themes. With a little searching, you can find ones to draw monsters, landscapes, homes, and even holiday-themed pictures. This means that you are more likely to be able to find something that appeals to your young artist.
Visual Perceptual Skills
Another thing I like is that this game works on visual perceptual skills. To play Roll A Dice, you have to find the place in the grid your dice roll indicates and copy a shape. Sometimes the shape is complicated and sometimes it is pretty simple. The amazing part is that you end up with a picture at the end of this game. Looking at the picture and drawing a picture with simple shapes and step by step instructions breaks it down for kids who struggle. These skills are also needed for copying words and sentences from another surface. They are also needed for scanning a dictionary page for the right word and finding the right information on a chart or graph. Working on visual perceptual skills in a playful way, with a game, is ideal for helping kids gain these important skills.
Possibly the best thing about this game though is that it is so very affordable. You can find tons of free and cheap options to try for this. All you need at home is a die out of any game, something to draw on, and a marker or chalk. I even have one here you can download for free! I created it myself and tested it out with my kids. Test it out and see what you think.
One of my kids created the house but then felt the need to add several more details. I love that it started as a simple drawing game, but turned into a creative activity. Natural artists like this game, but it also appeals to kids who don’t draw a lot, too.
Keeping it Low Stress
This game is flexible. I like playing with a chalkboard or dry erase board, but paper, pencils, and erasable pens also work well. Those options reduce stress on everyone, as you can easily erase a mistake and try again. They also make it easier for kids who are reluctant to create art to test it out. When you know you can erase it all in a quick swipe, you don’t have to stress the finished product quite so much. Working in a single black pen is great, but it can also be fun to have lots of colors available to use as you draw. Gage this to your child’s art style. Sometimes, more colors can add more stress. If that is the case for your kid, just use one. There is no right or wrong way of doing this activity!
About the Author
Laura Sowdon, OTR/L is an occupational therapist, writer, speaker, educator and creator of the Five Senses Literature Lessons homeschool curriculum. She has worked as an occupational therapist with children in public and private schools, as well as private practice. Laura has taught and managed homeschool co-ops as well as homeschooling her own three children. Laura is dedicated to the idea of educating children at a pace that aligns with brain and physical development milestones and respects neurodiversity in all its forms.