Between tv, the computer and console games, children have grown closer to high-tech and gadgets than of their own hands and imagination, which if properly stimulated could give birth to little big artists. Raising creative children is easier and more fun than you can imagine, and knowing how to think creatively and without boundaries is an excellent tool in life.
Here’s some tips to help you develop that skill.
- Organize, at least once a week, creative activities which you can do with your children. For example, Saturday afternoon might be reserved for painting a mural at the garden’s wall or, for example, to indulge in a session of children cuisine. Change things around to figure out which creative activities are more appreciated and, who knows, maybe tap into a hidden talent. Compile a list of possible hobbies for rainy days or whenever children get particularly restless.
- Home should be a place of inspiration. If you can, create an “arts corner” – filled with paper, notepads, paints, magic markers, crayons, fabrics, play-doh, old magazines, glue, etc. – where children can express their creativity spontaneously.
- Limit the time your children spend in front of the tv, computer and game consoles, but not the free time they use to play, create and innovate. Encourage them to create their own games, to stage plays or devise a book or magazine – it’s an excellent way to get a hold of their imagination and fall in love with it.
- Don’t disregard creative writing (you can help them write a diary, a story or a play which they could then rehearse); reading (extremely important to stimulate the brain and whet the appetite for this excellent habit; read out loud – they love it!); and even photography (with digital cameras, children can take hundreds of photos without spending a single dime, and it’ll always be interesting to check out their points of view).
- Encourage your children to ask questions and get them involved in the answers, encouraging them to ask “why is it that way?” and “what if this were different?”…
- Find a balance between traditional activities such as puzzles, maths and language exercises and new technologies, for example science kits, Internet browsing or creating a blog together.
- Horse around, play hide and seek and laugh a lot, after all, humour is also a source of creativity.
- Indulge in make-believe play-acting with your child, asking questions such as: “If I could invent a machine…”; “If I had three wishes…”; “If I could change the world…”
Make a point of not only passing along knowledge but teaching them practical skills and reasoning habits as well – teach them to use their own heads. Take every situation as an opportunity to pass along knowledge to your children.