Every child is an artist, bursting with imagination and creativity. However, parents can definitely take a step further by building a supportive environment for the kids to grow and develop their artistry. Here are a few ways you, as a parent, can foster creativity in your children:
Provide the Resources
Give your children the space and tools to express their creativity. This could be a designated space in the house, filled with craft kits and creative toys that do not involve instructions such as LEGOs, clays or finger paintings. By discarding instructions and giving a rule-free space, children can let their imagination run free and create whatever they desire.
Allow More Freedom
Telling your kids what (not) to do can limit their flexibility and stunt their creativity. Try to avoid demanding or putting restrictions (e.g. colouring within the lines, writing in a straight line), and instead be more responsive to your children’s ideas and leads.
Children can get more inspiration and activate their senses through new experiences. This could be as simple as watching a fantasy film, going to the zoo, or even a short trip to the local library. You can also ask some questions to prompt their imagination. For example, after watching a Harry Potter film you can ask, what would Hogwarts smell like? What kind of view would you see through the train windows?
Lead by Example
Children tend to mimic the people in their surroundings, so being creative yourself can help. Other than general art activities such as drawing and crafting, you can also be creative by using daily items in different ways. “Come up with lots of different ways to use an object,” said Elena Hoicka, a developmental psychology lecturer at the University of Sheffield. “For instance, when you’re around your child, you could use a towel not just as a towel, but also as a cape, a blanket, a hat and so much more.”