Promoting Your Children’s Creativity

I remember coming home from school with an art project I had been working on for the last month and running up to my mom to show her what I made. I was so proud of my art work and felt a sense of accomplishment. Although I turned out to be no artist by any means, support from my parents aided in my development of who I am today. My parents’ support of my creative work as a child, I believe, truly gave me confidence to pursue my passions and ideas.

I most recently learned how the power of a little encouragement can foster a creative environment and ultimately, happiness. In a recent post I discussed Caine, a boy who built an arcade out of cardboard boxes one summer. Up until Nirvan, an indie filmmaker, became is his customer, Caine had no one play his games. Caine’s father allowed Caine to build the arcade, but did not believe he would ever get a customer.

Nirvan ultimately surprised Caine with a flash mob at his arcade, and Caine’s customer base grew that day. Nirvan also developed a foundation that is raising money to send Caine to college. Caine’s father also said Caine has been excelling at school and is becoming more outgoing and chatting to everyone.

So what is the take away here? Creating an environment that promotes creativity can help your children’s future. All you need to do as parents is support your children, participate with them, and let them know they are creative.

An interesting article on Examiner.com by Stacia Garland discusses the importance of developing creativity in children. Stacia recommends praising children for their work, but also giving specific details such as “I really like the way you added purple to the leaves of your trees.” By doing this, you are letting your children know what they did well, and will build confidence.

A PBS website also discusses the importance of  creativity saying, “creativity is the freest form of self-expression. There is nothing more satisfying and fulfilling for children than to be able to express themselves openly and without judgment.”  Creating a judge-free zone is essential in creativity for children.

So how do you promote opportunities for creativity? PBS suggests…

  • Base activities around children’s interests and ideas
  • Listen to what your children are saying
  • Offer a wide range of activities and creative materials including: music, field trips, wire, clay, paper, wood or water.
  • Provide time for children to explore and pursue ideas

So whether your children are like Caine and come up with unique and innovative ideas like a cardboard arcade, or draw a picture of a stick figure with pink hair, you should complement your child and remember that their creativity in their younger years will pave the way for a successful future.

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