After countless trials to drag 10 years old boys as close as possible to pencil and paper, I succeeded. No lavishly illustrated book, no brand new drawing tools and no sweet reward have had the effect of this theme:  THE BATTLE CAMP.

Drawing the American Civil War (the Maryland Campaign September, 1862)
Russell, Robert E. L. Thirty pen and ink maps of the Maryland Campaign,: drawn from descriptive readings and map fragments. Baltimore: Robert E. Lee Russell, 1862. Map. Retrieved from the Library of Congress, (Accessed March 10, 2018.)

Their drawing interest has soared over blank papers, card boxes and paper tissues. How on earth did this happen?

Having tried bestselling methods and books cherishing subjects like snails, trucks, lions, school buses, abstract shapes, and even some comics, my patience has reached the verge of resignation, when …

I caught a glimpse of some scribbled papers on the floor: a couple of stick men were waving furiously their hands armed with (what else?) sticks to some other stick men. A whole bunch of rushed lines (sticks’ trajectories, as the kids explained me later) seemed to unify the two groups. A nascent monochrome Altamira painting!

If stick figures and battle trajectories trigger the drawing interest of some 10 years old lively boys, why struggling through delicate mandala patterns, motionless vehicles and cute cubs?

Try some other subjects that may open up new interests and curiosities in your children!