I just read this post over at UNIFORM studio about supporting a child making a painting. She talks about fewer color choices, a large canvas, using neutral colors...
Four- and five-year-olds create amazing pieces of art, and for them it is simply part of their daily routine. In my classroom, we do not really do what I define as "crafts" -- where everyone ends up with the same product. Children are presented with materials to explore and use as they see fit. They also know that they can ask for something more to make their vision a reality.
Lately, one boy has been making mobiles and hanging them from the ceiling of our classroom; he also makes them for his classmates to take home. I especially like the fruit mobile that is hanging over the art table.
Their art, their writing, and their block structures are natural and authentic because they are creating for themselves. Oftentimes adults create with the intention of sharing their product. Children do no have that pressure. Some of the most amazing things I have seen in the classroom have been in the recycling bin, or I have just caught a glimpse before it was ceremoniously knocked over in a crash of unit blocks.
Authenticity! I should write that in BIG letters and put it above my desk.