Creativity is undeniably one of the most needed assets in this fast changing world that is shifting from an industrial economy to a knowledge/experience based economy and now is perhaps the best time for kids at home to really explore their imagination and creativity.
So, what is creativity?
To understand what Creativity is we need to understand what creativity is not. Creativity in kids is NOT Art alone, Creativity is NOT related to the gene pool, Creativity is not for the ‘talented’ or the ‘artsy types. Creativity is not the end product. It’s time we break all the false perceptions and UNLEARN everything we think we know about the definition of creativity. Creativity embraces originality, imagination, self-expression, intelligence , curiosity and craftsmanship.
And Children are undeniably natural creative geniuses and there’s nothing more satisfying and fulfilling for children than to be able to express themselves openly and without judgement. However, somewhere between kindergarten and early teen years the ability in children to demonstrate creativity decreases immensely.
Well then, can creativity be taught?
No. It cannot be taught. However, it can be nurtured.
Here are 4 ways through which Parents and facilitators can encourage and nurture creativity in kids:
One thing we can all do as parents and educators are to simply provide our kids with the resources they need such as Time, Space, Materials and the Creative Freedom for expression without judgement. Kids need that uninterrupted ,unstructured time that is not planned by the adult, but child-directed. Sometimes the best fun kids can have is from leftovers, throwaways, a mess or a blank canvas. Check out some of our top DIY Art Activity Kits (https://www.thetalkingcanvas.com/product/my-pet-project-a-diy-art-kit-for-kids/) for Children that are designed to provide kids with the creative freedom to design and breathe life into their own creation.
Validation and Appreciatioon is super important for children when it comes to pursue something. When families value and recognised creativity as a source of inner joy. Children learn to appreciate tis natural gift of humans. Some fun ways to indulge in the creativity as a family is by playing a game of Pictionary , or collaborating with our children in craft projects (https://www.instagram.com/tv/CFi75KAJGNj/ ) or working on art projects together with your kids (https://www.thetalkingcanvas.com/product/wear-my-art-diy-kit-copy-2/ ) . Exhibiting their creative work gives kids that added validation to keep pursuing creative activities. Some ways to demonstrate your appreciation to their work – Pining their artwork to the refrigerator, Framing their artwork, Sharing it with friends and family Or you could even take it a step further and ask them to submit their best artwork (https://www.thetalkingcanvas.com/design-art-tshirts/ ) that could get selected and be included in our collection! However, we need to always remember that the focus needs to weigh more on the creative process rather than the creative outcome or the final product alone.
As Parents, educators and caregivers we need to expose our kids to all the inspiration they can breathe in. One way of Doing so is to inculcate ‘Possibility Thinking’ –Once we as adults change our narrative from “this is..” to “what if ..” , automatically kids change their curiosity pattern from “ what is this?” alone to “what can I do with this?”.
In order to consciously cultivate imagination in children- Spend some family time every now and then on art, music and creative affairs, Introduce activities to children that are based on their own interests and ideas, provide them with a variety of mediums and materials to make art, Expose children to specially curated creative workshops such as (https://www.thetalkingcanvas.com/jr-monsters-doodle-club/) – This is possibly one of the very few learning platforms which encourages kids to doodle their imagination and express themselves rather than being taught to copy and replicate a particular style. Infact, we may even take it to the next level, by using the doodles on our future collections! How inspiring is it for a child to see their work go places?
What children need are delicate constructive criticism than is devoid of comparison and judgement. Most art schools and online art platforms often teach and idealise certain styles of artwork as the benchmark. And that is when the fear of failure , and the unecesasary focus on achievement discourages kids from creating without any inhibitions. That is why it is important to identify courses like (https://www.thetalkingcanvas.com/jr-monsters-doodle-club/) and junior artist communities such as (https://www.thetalkingcanvas.com/courses/members/anina/activity/ ) that are designed consciously to nurture and encourage creativity, imagination, innovation, inventiveness, collaboration and thus self confidence in children.
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