Disclaimer: I am not much of a TV watcher...maybe it's the ads...so much really awful stuff, especially with all the holiday shopping hype. But OK, it was on, and I caught an ad for an art computer game for kids with which they can "draw," "paint" and make various "fun" objects with the printed out results. I was horrified.
Understand, I'm in favor of kids being computer-literate. My older son was banging away on the keyboard playing an alphabet game when he was 2. So why did this "art" thing make me want to scream? (I questioned my rather extreme aversion to this product.) In a word, CLEAN, way, way too clean. No paints to smear around and mix together, no broken crayons (or even pristine ones) to experiment with, no squishy play doh, no slobbering glue bottles or glitter on the floor...all that tactile stuff that evolves into appreciation and understanding of materials. Just a sort of magic wand to touch and apply various pre-selected colors. Very controlled also, of course.
I guess that parents' desire for neatness, cleanliness and control form the great divide between kids who are allowed and encouraged to really be creative (at least at home) and those who have to make do with such as this. I guess it's better than nothing...but somehow I'm not even convinced of that!