Bringing Out Your Child’s Creativity
Every child has creativity that’s just waiting to be uncovered. Children as young as infants can already show hints of creativity in them. Their creativity is further honed up until they reach their older school-age years.
At infant stage, children already respond to sound, movement, and color. As toddlers, they begin flexing their muscles. This is the best time to give them things like crayons, drawing papers, clay, and other art materials.
When they reach their preschool years, children become these bundles of energy, saying and asking a lot. They talk, play, and run around a lot. This is when they learn how to perform, dancing and singing to gain attention. And even when they’re trying to flip through the pages of their favorite books, despite not being able to read yet, they’re just as creative.
When children are on their early school-age years, it’s normal for them to start losing interest in artsy activities. This is because being in school enables them to gain more friends, so they end up playing more often than doing art stuff. As parents, you should encourage your children to continue with their creative activities, like art, music, dance, and singing. Just nudge, but don’t push. Playing pretend is also a good way of honing their creative skills as this will make them use their imagination.
As soon as your children reach their older school-age years, they would have developed their interests and formed friendships. Since they’re approaching their teenage years, expect that the school and social scenes can contribute to their emotional lows and frustrations. Let them express themselves through creative means, like writing, singing, dancing, painting, drawing, and sculpting. Try and talk to them about their disappointments. Encourage them to vent through their own creative means.
Children are smart and creative. They just need your support and understanding to let them express their interests and emotions. Present them with choices, but let them do the choosing. For example, if you have a boy and he would like to learn how to play the harp, let him. Some dads would rather have little league players rather than harpists, but if your boy’s passion is in music, then let him. There’s no better way of saying this, but you need to BACK OFF. Just be there as their guide and support system, not as dictators. Just arm them with the right tools and the right environment, and then let them be.
It’s pretty much like teaching them how to wash their hands. You show them how to do it, give them access to the right tools like a step stool for them to reach the sink, a mild but effective soap, clean running water, and clean towel. Teach them the basics, but let them get the hang of it to do it on their own.
Lastly, you should learn how to value originality instead of excellence. Mistakes are inevitable. If you as an adult can commit mistakes, what more your little ones? Encourage them to be unique rather than perfect. High school can be quite a hard time for anybody. Stereotypes are everywhere. If you remind them that they don’t have to be cheerleaders or quarterbacks to gain your love and attention, then they’d do just fine.