It is almost accepted as a norm by most people that the level of creativity is innate in every individual. All we can do is just accept the way our mind works. The truth is, our growing environment in our tender years decide our graph of creativity to a great extent. Discouraging peers, restricting or overprotective parents, negative teachings, and distracting surroundings, all play their part in killing the imaginative powers and innovative ideas of young minds. Plus, the need of teachers and adults to make children conform to the norms is another way to discourage new ideas that dwell in their minds.
If you are one of the smart parents who wish to nurture your child’s creativity, here are a few tips that can prove to be helpful:
1. Provide Your Child with Artistic Supplies – Paint, brushes, canvas, clay, paper, are all the materials that impel children to create something. While a little guidance doesn’t harm but let your children explore their imagination to make what they want out of these supplies. Parents must realize that it is not the final product but the process of creating that is more important to inspire creativity in children. So, allowing them the freedom of expression is mandatory to nurture their innovative side. You may even encourage them to make their scary halloween costumes for 2012 themselves, if they are old enough.
2. Ask Them Open-Ended Questions – Questions that have a lot many possibilities can force a child to think deeply and you may even discuss various other alternative possibilities with your child, giving them a whole new perspective on things. What if questions, or questions like, how can you change or improvise this, or how do you feel about something, et al are all good examples of such questions.
3. Allocate Time For Imaginative Play in Their Everyday Schedule – Give children some time to indulge in their favorite activity once in a day, just for fun. It may be painting, dancing, playing any musical instrument, or anything else. It will help to limit the use of electronic toys as it restricts thinking. Empty boxes or building blocks are open-ended toys that best exploits the imagination of children. Also, keeping a check on TV viewing is also important as television often coveys a distorted view of others and promote gender-based, racial, religious, and cultural stereotypes.
Creativity develops a child’s ability to solve their own problems and fosters open thinking. Parents should try to adapt to children’s way of thinking as much as they can, instead of trying to structure their imagination to adapt to their own adult ways that are corrupted by what is “acceptable” to majority.