Tips for parents

How To Foster Your Child’s Creativity

Creativity is the key to problem-solving, thinking outside of the box, and is essential to children. Learn how to bring this alive and reignite your child’s creative thinking.    
26 April 2022

With character toys, pre-made notions of how certain toys should be played with, and more TV and screen time being included within households, children’s personal creativity is on the decline. Long gone are the days when a child would see a stick and instantly use their imagination. It is no longer seen as a sword for children to fight off knights or slay dragons, no longer recognized for its stirring capacity for making mud pies. With pre-made toys to fit any storyline, children are more inclined to recreate than create their own adventures.

The reason behind this is that creativity is not taught in the way it once was. Unlike popular belief, creativity is a skill that is learned, it is not a characteristic that children are born with. 

Back in a time when toys encouraged imaginative play paired with non-existent or limited TV time, children were encouraged to use their imagination more, sparking their personal creativity.


The Benefits Of Building Creativity In Children

Creativity and the ability to use imagination and visualize possibilities are skills used in many professions. It isn’t just limited to the creative arts of dance, music and other art forms. 

Creativity involves using parts of the brain to look past what is in front of you and consider the possibilities that could help you reach the outcome you are looking for. It is this ability to assess and solve problems that makes creativity such a useful skill. 

A creative mentality encourages a child, or an individual of any age, to assess a problem in a variety of different methods and encourages proactive thinking and problem-solving. This skill then blossoms as your children develop their creative prowess and can be applied in various aspects of their schooling and future career and lifestyle choices. Creativity has also been demonstrated to aid mathematical problem solving and the development of scientific breakthroughs, as well as enforcing the ability to handle and manage social interactions.

The great news is there are many ways you can jump-start your child’s creativity once more.

Limit TV And Screen Time

With time limits being applied to the amount of screen time they are permitted to, your children are instantly encouraged to spark their creativity and create their own fun and ways to pass the time. 

Not only will your child be encouraged to engage in creative play, but they will also be having a limit applied to how many pre-created stories they are being exposed to. 

Read Outloud To Your Children

One of the many benefits of reading stories and books aloud to your children is the fact that they are encouraged to use their imagination through the words they are hearing. By listening and visualizing the plot, your child is being taught to open their mind up, engage in the story, visualize the characters and see the tale as it unfolds. 

Participate In Imagination Play

Children learn from you. It is not a new concept. If you use your creativity while participating in a game, your child will follow suit. 

Games as simple as ‘the floor is lava’, will encourage your child to activate that creative part of their brain. For example, children will have to look around them and assess their surroundings to generate a solution for being able to move from one location to another without stepping foot on the floor. 

School Plays A Vital Role

As a parent, there are roles that you can partake in and encourage. However, your child’s creative side is also developed through their schooling and education. Different schools’ situations will apply different focuses on how to develop and enrich your child’s creative capacity. 

Over recent years, schools have changed and continually adapted how they teach. Long gone are the days of being sat at a desk listening to verbal teaching. Through interactive and open-ended questions, schools are proactively encouraging children to start thinking for themselves while encouraging them to influence how the lessons are taught. 

With this understanding of the need to bring a creative culture into the context of education, schools are now ensuring that their classrooms are more visually stimulating. 

Invest In Creative Thinking Toys

With an array and variety of different toys being available, it is easy to get caught up without realizing and giving your child an abundance of toys that are attached to premade adventures and limit their personal creative thinking. 

Changing the way you assess which toys to buy and give them will change the way they play. Opting for toys that open the door to imaginative play, problem-solving and personal thinking will encourage creativity from your child. 

Suggestions for these types are toys are (but are not limited to):

  • Lego or other building blocks
  • Mud kitchens or play kitchens
  • Arts and crafts
  • Construction toys