Fostering Creativity in Young Children

Being creative is a wonderful asset. This innovative ability is demonstrated in the ways that we approach work, how we solve problems, and the ways we spend our spare time. Those who look at situations in creative ways often greet life in an upbeat fashion.

Some people seem to be born creative and for others it may be a bit of a challenge. No matter what, the characteristic can definitely be enhanced. Here are some ways that you can encourage creativity at home. Teachers, these ideas can also be adapted for the classroom.

Tolerance for Chaos
If everything in your house always has to be neat and tidy, you will have a difficult time encouraging creativity. Sometimes it is necessary to mess up the house to have fun.

Tolerance for chaos is also very helpful in making good decisions. Kids (and adults) often want instant answers. To make good decisions it is frequently necessary to have “think time.” During this think time, one can come up with a variety of possible choices from which to choose. The more choices, the greater the chance one has of selecting a good one.

Less Is More
You don’t have to spend any extra money to encourage creativity in kids. All you need to do is look around the house and think about different ways of using the items you already have.
Sheets and blankets draped across furniture make great playhouses. This may mean rearranging the furniture. Add some stuffed animals and a whole fantasy world can be constructed. Let the kids use their imaginations for the use of each room or area of this fantasy world.

Keep a box of unused or discarded hats, costume jewelry, pieces of cloth, shoes, and clothing that children can use to dress-up. Make sure a full-length mirror is available so kids can see how they look. An old slip may suddenly become the gown of a princess, especially when combined with a necklace and a feathery boa. Garage sales and thrift shops are also inexpensive places to buy items for the dress-up box.

Bathtub toys can consist of empty plastic bottles of various sizes that can be floated or used to pour water from container to container. A plastic bowl may become a boat. All can be stored under the sink in a pail.

Recycle your meat trays, tin foil, and anything else that can be washed. Save all kinds of odds and ends of ribbon, string, yarn, sewing scraps, colorful paper, catalogs, etc. Whenever you’re going to throw something out, look at it in a different way and think if your child might find a use for it. Keep the items in a creativity box for the kids on a rainy day. Coupled with scissors, markers, and glue, they will create artwork and inventions.

When Halloween rolls around, don’t go out and buy costumes; instead, let your youngsters decide who or what they want to be. Then decide together how the costume might be made.

Encourage Fantasy
Allow and encourage kids to create fantasy themes. Liam and Charlotte did just that. For quite some time, everything in their lives revolved around these themes. One time they decided they were birds. Another time they decided they were flies. With each fantasy, they created songs, rhymes, ways that they moved their bodies, games they played, and how they slept. It would have been easy to discourage this, especially when they decided that birds only eat with their beaks. After all, this is not encouraging good manners at the table; however, fantasies don’t last forever, and they had a lot of fun while they were birds.

Mistakes Are Great
Being creative often leads to mistakes, which isn’t necessarily a bad thing. Mistakes serve two purposes: we learn from them (hopefully) and they can sometimes lead us in a positive direction that we did not anticipate. Many successful inventions originated from mistakes. There are some great books on this subject that would be fun to read with your child. Two of these are written by Charlotte Jones.

Let Their Minds Flow
So, enjoy and encourage creativity in your children. Know that, with your encouragement, these traits will help them to become productive individuals and good problem solvers as adults.

No comments:

Post a Comment

Your comments will be available after approval.