17 helpful ways to DEVELOP CREATIVITY in kids
Develop Creativity in Kids: Kids are naturally filled with creativity with powerful imaginations. Creativity offers the child a bounty of intellectual, emotional, and even health benefits.
For several children, their creativity and imagination reached out its peak before the age of six years old, the children are very curious about their around the world.
You can observe that only 1-year child is so curious around the world. They put much stuff in their mouth and touch many things to learn about things.
One study has been found that kids’ imaginations helped them cope better with pain. Creativity also helps kids be more confident, learn better and develop social skills.
- What is Creativity?
- Importance of Creativity
- Tips to develop creativity in kids
- Note to Parents (Word of Caution)
What is Creativity?
Creativity is the freest kind of self-expression. There is nothing more satisfying and fulfilling for children than to be able to express themselves openly and without judgment.
The experiences children have during their first years of life can significantly enhance the event of their creativity.
Employing creativity while manipulating playdough, creating recipes by mixing dirt and water, working with art materials, splashing in puddles, or pretending to fly can further to develop creativity in kids.
Importance of Creativity:
We have listed below few of the importance of creativity.
- Creative activities help acknowledge and celebrate children’s uniqueness.
- It also offers us excellent opportunities to personalize our teaching and specialize in each child.
- Being creative gives us opportunities to undertake out new ideas, and new ways of thinking and problem-solving.
- Creativity encourages kids’ self-expression, the way to make something from personal feelings and experiences.
Experts foresee creativity to be one of the main skills needed in the future to make a person successful.
Tips to develop creativity in kids:
With these newfound representational abilities, children’s imaginations become boundless!
They love to pretend games and have a natural tendency to fantasize, experiment, and explore.
Below, some expert’s methods that will help parents Develop Creativity in Kids.
1. Give opportunity to children to be creative
Children need many opportunities for creative play and artistic thinking.
Start by providing activities that are supported by the children’s interests and ideas. Make sure to provide children a decent range of creative materials and experiences.
Being creative is a sort of drawing or painting the probabilities are endless.
It is vital to provide children much time to explore materials and pursue their ideas.
All children to be truly creative need the liberty to commit themselves completely to the difficulty and make whatever activity they are doing their own.
2. Set Right Environment
You can set the right environment by having a dedicated place for your children to play. It can even be a small place. Ensure that needed articles to play a present in that place. And the place is child proofed.
By having such a place, it will reduce your workload of having to clean different places around your house. And saves delicate furniture in your house from the mess that children might create while they play.
You can have some old furniture, laminated walls for easy cleaning and place an old rug in that corner.
3. Explore with your kids
Children are born with a clean slate of mind. The more you expose children to different environments. And things around the world the more knowledge they gain of their surroundings.
The more knowledge the children have the more they will use the knowledge in creative ways to solution things.
So as parents it is our duty to ensure that children get the needed exposure to peak their senses.
So, explore with your kids. Take them for a walk outside, go to the museum together, visit to the aquarium, spend time at the local library, visit the zoo in your area, have a picnic at the park.
All these add up to the knowledge that your children will have a few the world around them.
4. Encourage Free Play
As fee play is spontaneous play, as the child starts to engage in free play the child starts to use and its own imagination and creativity to start a play of which he/she is the author of. The play is envisioned and executed from scratch. Such activity repeated religiously for long periods and many instances foundation of brain development happens for imagination and creativity.
E.g. One of the examples of free play is symbolic play. In symbolic play a child tends to enact a symbolic representation of the day today activity such as serving tea/ snacks or feeding dolls.
You can also read our detailed blog on Free play at – A unique way to raise creative kids
5. Be acceptable to the idea of getting messy
When your child is doing something, creative there are good chances that getting a little bit messy and dirty is part of it.
There, are little chances of such messiness when they are playing with a toy or a gadget that you have bought them. But there are equally little chances that your child will be creative when they are playing with such things.
So be acceptable to the idea of a little mess. While this means a little bit of extra work for you understandably so.
But out of the love that you have for your child and the interest that you want your child to get better at being creative this is something that we need to tolerate. And be OK with them if they are playing.
If you are still not convinced and a little bit worried about the mess we request you to read or article MESSY PLAY – Powerful benefits for your child where we have also given some tips on how to handle such messy play and what are the benefits of it.
6. Read to your kids
When should when you reach stories to your child or help them read such stories? The characters invariably become role models to your children.
The way in which these characters use their wit and creativity to overcome the challenge that they faced will act like guidelines for your child.
It also opens different possibilities and avenues for your child to think that they have not thought of before. So, the more your child is exposed to reading the more chances are that your child will develop healthy imagination and creative skills.
If you like to know more on how to teach your children to read we have written an article on the same.Incredible benefits of reading to kids along with deep insights into reading.
And to drive home the point of why reading is important to foster creativity it will be a crime if we do not emphasise the importance of storytelling to your children. When you have time we urge you to glance upon a blog Storytelling to kids – Popular Trend these day.
7. Encourage Art Activities
Art is a creative expression that nurtures imagination, not a lesson in following directions. Through painting, sculpture, collage, clay, drawing, or the opposite medium, art could also be how for kids to work through emotions, make decisions, and express their ideas.
Manipulating art materials provides how of freedom yet also encourages focus and concentration. Furthermore, art activities build confidence because children gain how of mastery over materials resulting in a replacement creation.
8. Allow them to engage in unstructured activities
Unstructured activities are free flowing which does not have any fixed outcome. The child creates the activity as it progresses into the activity. Such activity is child led and child directed activities.
Most of the time we tend to feel that our children are ideally loitering around when they are in the process of unstructured activities.
We feel that they are wasting time just because they are running around and doing something that we understand.
For children everything is learning be a time that they are playing or when they are studying. Even when they are just sitting simply staring into nature and observing. They are learning and gathering information.
In fact, you would be surprised to know that boredom is one of the best things that helps a child to think creatively.
Boredom so important and crucial for child development that we have written a separate in the article “I AM BORED” – Surprising benefits of Boredom for kids about the benefits of boredom.
This blog also addresses what parents need to do when children call out to them saying they are bored.
9. Play Along with your kid – By Making a Unique Thing
When your child invents a scenario, he tries on many various roles and organizes his thoughts while developing social and verbal skills.
Participate in the imaginative play by taking up a task yourself. Play with stuffed toys or puppets (make simple puppets by putting your hand during a sock).
Let your child lead your playtime together. If your child is into superheroes, consider the power your child might want as his own superpower feeling. Consider having your child create a replacement superhero!
10. Show interest in your kid’s activity
Anything that you pay attention to grows. Anything that you do not withers. After your child is finished playing. Speak to the child what they have played. Show interest in their activity.
Ask them about their hobby class if they have just returned from one. Listen patiently for their answers and try to understand them better.
You will be able to get clues on what they are doing. And challenges they are facing. Wherever possible that you think creativity can be used give them suggestions for it.
11. Ask open end questions
Ask children open ended questions. Questions that will make them think and reply to you.
The wider your question is the more creative the answer would be.
You can ask your child why is the mermaid in the water? Why do they think that animals cannot fly? Why Superman stronger than Spiderman? Which superhero do they like?
You might feel that these are silly questions and make no logical sense. But remember a question is a question to the child. And the child will attempt to answer it.
And the more you engage in such conversations the more involved and creative they become in answering to your questions.
12. Understand and cultivate their passions
When you understand your child’s interest and you encourage them to improve on it. You invariably encourage them to try something new from the routine.
And when you are cultivating their passion you will find that they are not only involved. But they also naturally take to very creative ways of solving any problems that they may encounter while they are at it.
Say your child likes to learn the guitar or they like to dance, or write a poem, or sing a song, or act in a school play. Encourage them to explore further.
Adding on one such activity to your child’s routine not only helps in your child learning a new skill. But helps in increasing creativity many times over.
13. Do It Yourself (DIY)
Not everything needs to be ready made or off the shelf. Try doing some small activities yourself partnering along with your kid.
Example fixing a tap along with your kid as your handyman. Attempt to try to fix the problem.
While this might give you some time to engage with your kid. Your kid will be learning a lot of things from you. Not only how to fix the tab but also will be learning how you are encountering the challenges and overcoming it.
While you do such activities there will be numerous times when you will have to think of creative solutions to tackle the problem in hand. And sometimes you will also be surprise with the solutions your kids come up with.
14. Try something new & Change routine
Good healthy habits a good and we need to create them. We have written about healthy habits in our blog title 25 Good Habits you need to teach your kid TODAY.
However, habits are something when formed and is executed without much thought process or thinking.
While habits are good and needed. Habits do not foster creativity. To break the cycle, it is always good to occasionally try something new for a change in routine.
Do something new. It can be even little things like trying out a new food item. A new vegetable that you have never had before. Listening to a new song or better still a new genre. Taking a different route to go to school.
Play water mix and match. Challenge your kid to dress up like Superman or some favourite figure of your kid.
Anything that goes out of routine needs brain work and creativity to overcome it. By purposefully welcoming it makes us intentionally develop creativity in kids.
Anything new and out of routine makes you brain alert. And this alertness brings about problem solving skill and creativity.
So as parents remember this and make it a conscious effort to bring about some change occasionally into well-established practices.
15. Problem solve with your kid
When you talk to your child you learn a lot of things about your child. One of the things that you learn are the things that are troubling your child.
You learn the challengers that they are facing or where they are struggling. This knowledge gives you a window of opportunity to brainstorm with your child.
Yes, it is important to acknowledge and sympathies with your child for the challenge that they are facing. However it will be more beneficial when you teach your child how to face the challenge.
Through brainstorming which is a very creative process you and your child will be able to come to a solution to the problem that your child is facing.
This is very important especially currently. Where there are so many social pressures that our children go through. It is important that we need to make our children very resilient.
We need to bring them up as people who can face problems head on. In order to help parents we have written a blog on 11 Practical ways to help your child face challenges.
This blog also is also written to help kids develop healthy coping habits for challenges that do not have immediate solution but with time they can ease.
16. Encourage individuality and independence
While for some of us it is very tempting to keep interfering into a child activity. To ensure that they are not only safe but also that they are utilising their time well. But such things can only hurt creative process.
If the child is playing in a safe environment, play on their own. Let them make their own decisions of what to play and how to play.
Even though there might be a smarter way in which they can play, and you figured it out. Resist the temptation to go and change the way they are playing and make them play as per your ideas.
Wait till later where you can engage with them asking them about their activities and you can slowly put in your suggestion for them to consider the next time.
It is important that children are in control of their own play and this gives them a sense of responsibility and a sense of control on their outcome.
And when this responsibility comes in, they try to figure solution for their own problems and try to overcome the same creatively.
17. Praise your child’s effort
Children need to know that they are in an environment where creativity is appreciated. And the best way to convey this message is when you openly praise your child’s effort.
If they found a creative solution to a problem, talk proudly about it over dinner table conversation where your kid is also part of. Tell your spouse how proud you are that your kid was able to solve an issue all by himself.
Your child will get the message on the importance of creativity. And will start exercising his creative brains muscles much more. To solve his problem so that you can be proud of it.
Note to parents
While we have listed above the ways in which you can develop creativity in kids. It does not end there.
There are few things that we need to avoid doing to help develop creativity in kids.
We have listed below few of the things that we believe that a parent should not do When they are in the quest to improve creativity in their child.
Things to Avoid
Do not reward them
When they use creativity to solve an issue. You need to praise them but not reward them.
Rewarding them makes them start trying to be creative for the sake of reward.
And this can make them to start thinking of ways to take shortcuts just to get a reward.
Do not compare your kids
Each kid is different and each kid’s ability to be creative is different. When you compare your kid’s creativity with that of their peers it only put additional pressure on your child.
They might try initially to better their skills. But if they fail, they may altogether try to avoid situations where they need to use creativity.
Do not set high expectations
Many times, we see kids displaying their talent in videos or TV. And when we expect our child to deliver such high levels of performance, we make our child anxious.
Enjoy what your child can offer and built upon it in the pace that your child is comfortable with.
Do not be critical
It is every parent dream that their children are rock stars in everything that they do. However, this is far from reality.
While you can encourage your kid to try to do different things. It is never advised to be very critical when they fail in their attempt.
Do not disturb your child
Sometimes a creative process might look like a waste of time. When your child is silent and deep in play it is best that you leave your child alone to finish their activity.
Disturbing them with suggestions or with some errands to run or with some other activity. While they are engrossed in one. Will only make the child lose focus and give up on the activity altogether.
Reduce Screen Time
In my personal opinion if I must call out one activity that takes a lot of our children’s time. And which has zero creative value. It must be the time that our children spend in front of the screen.
It really switches our kids brain off and strains their eyes while the stare into screens. With absolutely no value to themselves.
Be very strict about the amount of screen time your child has. Even if they appeared to be free and bored it is still better to be so than trying to engage them by giving them a gadget.
Video Time: Expert Opinion about how to develop creativity in kids
Creativity could also be an important part of childhood and child development. Through creativity and imagination children can grow emotionally, intellectually, and socially.
Creative experiences help kids develop creative skills and enable them to share their thoughts, feelings, and ideas.
Creativity is one of the major skills that is needed for our children to succeed in the VUCA world.
Creativity is the skill of the future.
While most of us do not know the types of job environment that our children will be in by the time, they hit the work spot.
But we do have some idea of the type of skills that they would need to succeed.
So, even more important that we need to invest time and energy to ensure that we develop creativity in kids at very early stage in life.
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