I’m on a mission this year to clear out pockets of clutter around our house. In a recent cleaning mission, I found our old digital camera which was a wedding gift from my dad and step mom. Not wanting to donate it, I asked Malone if he was interested in it. And he was. I soon quickly realized there were other reasons why I gave my preschooler a real camera.
1. It reaches responsibility. Handing my preschooler a real digital camera instead of toy that also takes photos means he must handle it with care. It’s not a toy but something that can break if dropped. He’s been extra great about handling it well after a few reminders from us.
2. It gives him a new outlet for creativity beyond painting, coloring, and gluing random bits of stuff onto paper.
3. It gives me insight into his world. I’ve shared with you today four photos out of the 800 that are currently on his camera card (His, btw are straight out of the camera with no edits besides my watermark). Most of the photos are of his favorite tv characters, our cat, random spots in our house, and traffic. All things that he felt were important enough to take a picture of.
4. It gives him ownership of a piece of his world. If we’re honest with each other, so much of a preschooler’s day is spent obeying others. Having his own camera means that if he wants to take a photograph, he can. He doesn’t have to ask permission from a parent or wait for a certain time of day.
5. It gives him a new way to participate in his world. My preschooler isn’t exactly one to get up and dance in a room full of people he doesn’t know. But on a recent outing to see Mr. Steve (above), Malone couldn’t put is camera down.
6. He’s freezing a moment. I often think, if I don’t have a picture can I prove that it happened? When he is 18 and off to college, I’ll look back on his early photos and reminisce about the days we spent talking about framing a shot and why it is important to stand away from your subject a bit.
7. Malone is blessed to have a few professional photographers in his life. Giving him his own camera means that he can be like those he admires. And it has helped him get over being camera shy a bit as well.
8. He is having fun! Malone loves to compose photographs (like the one above with our cat and his favorite new truck). He takes pictures daily. If we’re out and about, something will frequently catch his eye and he’ll ask for his camera.
9. He is teaching me about the beauty and my own self image through his lens. Right after he took this he exclaimed “beautiful, mama!” I’m learning to see what he sees, instead of a face that is too pink, pregnancy acne, and eyebrows that are long overdue for a wax.
10. He is learning a new skill that will be useful for the rest of his life. He’s learning that the ordinary can become extraordinary with the click of a finger.
I can’t wait to see where this new photography journey will take him. Will he be a professional photographer someday? Who knows? Will we have fun in the process of learning photography together? Absolutely.
I’m sharing this post today with a new friend’s link up on her There Is Grace blog.