Speaking of crayons, I learned a valuable lesson this summer. When we were on vacation, our four year old granddaughter was the only child with a lot of adults. So her mom brought plenty of toys to help occupy / settle her. One day she was coloring and she asked her mom and me to color with her. We got down to business and began coloring the princesses' dresses. After awhile I looked up to see O. dancing around playing and my daughter and I were madly coloring away!
I had a teacher who kept files full of pictures to color when they were done with their work. She was onto something with that. When the kids became jumpy and out of sorts, she would hand out pictures for the kids to color. It was amazing to see how they quieted down and calmed. It wasn't a daily ritual, and the practice was a very non-confrontational way of reining the kids back in. It was especially successful during testing days when students needed to be respectful of others when they completed their tests.
Today's kids are so over stimulated by their world that a little bit of coloring is an inexpensive therapy!!