Face painting kids is fun especially when I meet a kid who wants to pretend to be a character or animal because it involves exploring fearlessness in a safe way. One young boy who was becoming a tiger told me,
“Tigers are really patient.” (I complimented him on sitting so nicely while I put on the make-up.) He went on: “They have to wait very quietly for their prey AND THEN THEY POUNCE!”
Ha! He was a very clever tiger!
I am often the first clown a kid has met. With all the negative representation on television and a somewhat subconscious fear of masks and make-up hiding a person’s identity it is understandable some children will prefer to hang back.
I do not believe in pressuring a child to participate. I really think it is important that kids get to observe clowns however!
The process of “clowning” is very valuable to the brain, for the clown’s and for the audience’s brains.
Clowning is an opportunity to look at ourselves differently. It opens up the possibility for play and gives us a chance to laugh about things we might otherwise worry about, like “being different” “looking foolish” or “being SURPRISED!”