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Coloring Books - What Are They?


There are coloring books for both adults and little children. Coloring books and coloring pages are produced on cardboard sheets or papers. Some of the coloring pages are sold individually or can be ripped off from the coloring books that are made to enable that. Some coloring books may feature a storyline that kids could follow, therefore the pages can’t be torn out of books. Many coloring books these days include coloring pages of extremely popular cartoon characters, such as Lego Ninjago coloring pages or Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles coloring pages. These are commonly used as advertising materials for upcoming cartoons or animated films. Other activities available in coloring books and coloring pages are: puzzles, connecting the dots, and mazes and number games. Another type of activity includes coloring books that come with stickers that can be attached on certain pages on these books.


Coloring Books History

Coloring books first come about in the US. This emergence was part of a process called the democratization of art. The man behind this process was an artist from England called Josh Reynolds. The other two teachers who assisted this process were Johann Pestalozzi from Switzerland and the German Friedrich Fröbel who was his student. Teachers from all over agreed that an education in the arts was crucial in developing cognitive skills and enhancing peoples' perception of the world. Education in art also facilitated a person’s ability to develop skills crucial later on, particularly those relating to finding a suitable future job. Spiritual, social and mental growth are all enhanced in children who take part in artistic activities.


The inventors of the coloring book are the McLoughlin Brothers. The 'Little Folk's Painting Book was the McLoughlin Brother's first coloring book, and they made it in the 1880's. They collaborated with Kate Greenway on this project and the continued to publish coloring books well into the 1920’s. After that, the McLoughlin Brothers became part of the Milton Bradley company. Richard Outcault is another important figure in the history of coloring books. In 1907, Richard created a coloring book called Buster's Paint Book which was based on a character he had created in 1902 named Buster Brown. This book is what began the process of companies using coloring books as a means for advertising their products. These books were initially made to be painted instead of being colored, and despite the emergence and popularity of crayons in the 1930’s, this did not change.


Educational Uses of Coloring Books

These days coloring books are commonly used in schools for teaching small children about different things. From alphabets to numbers you can find coloring books pertaining to every topic. Small children find these books easy and more engaging than other ways of learning as images are easier to remember and memorize compared to only words. Images are also a great way of teaching groups and individual a new language. They are also utilized in selected classes as a method of enhancing creativity and knowledge of different topics such as geometry. Coloring books for adults and graduate level students have been created since the 1980’s by large publishers who aimed to focus on these groups and educate them on physiology and anatomy, as these images with numerous colors facilitated learning and memorizing also.