7 Ways to Foster Creative Thinking in Your Child
Some parents wrongly believe that creativity is an inborn talent. However, it’s not true. Creativity is a skill, and parents can help their kids to acquire it.
If you want to raise the next Elon Musk or Coco Chanel, you should encourage creative thinking in your child. You should tweak the way your kids study and have fun in order to ensure that they will achieve success in adult life.
Travel to new places
Traveling is a great way to explore the world and foster creative thinking in children. Trips to new destinations allow kids to physically get away from an issue and see it from another angle: once a plane will take off, your kids will see the “trees” as a “forest”.
The more time your children will spend abroad, the more creative they will be, research suggests. Travel exposes kids to new cultures, religions, languages, and customs, and this exposure broadens their perspective. Also, it helps to build a state of positivity—the ideal brain state for creative thinking to occur.
Reading books for children is one of the best ways to nurture creativity and imagination. The more children read, the better they can build up and expand their knowledge. Reading allows kids to practice imagination by letting the words describe a certain image.
As a parent, you should encourage your kids to read books on a daily basis. Here is what you should do:
- Become an example to follow. Read books daily, and your kids will copy your behavior.
- Allow your kids to choose books they like. Never force them to read something that doesn’t match their interests.
- Make reading a part of your kids’ daily routine. For instance, encourage your son and daughter to read before bed for 30 minutes.
Teach kids to write stories
Storytelling engages important creativity skills such as curiosity, imagination, exploration of ideas, critical thinking skills, and problem-solving. So if you homeschool your kids, it will be wise to teach them not only to read stories but also to write them.
Storytelling helps kids to express their ideas more clearly. It allows them to build confidence in telling their own story to their peers and also learn to respect other people’s stories.
Here is what you can do to help your kids to become better storytellers:
- Encourage them to visit educational and writing websites like Subjecto to find examples of well-crafted stories and writing guidelines.
- Try out “string-a-long stories” activity with your family. Start the story with the words “Once upon a time….” and ask the following player to say something relatable to keep the story going.
- Play with wordless books. Picture books provide a setting for visual cues, and that’s a great thing. Such books inspire the imagination and help to bring out a storyteller in your child.
Show that every problem has more than one solution
Probably one of the worst things about traditional schools is that teachers make kids believe that every problem has only one right solution. Real-world is complex, and in most cases, every problem has multiple solutions.
You should explain to your children that it’s important to look at issues from different perspectives and consider various solutions. Whether it’s a math problem or an emotional problem, kids should understand that if they come up with a solution that doesn’t match someone else’s solution, it doesn’t mean that they are wrong.
Help your little ones to understand this simple truth, and you will raise creative, emotionally intelligent children.
Try out STEM activities
Traditional ways of teaching are boring, and that kills creativity. STEM activities are fun – they help not only to activate an interest in science but also to encourage creative thinking.
If you homeschool or afterschool your kids, try to add different STEM activities to the existing curricula. See which experiments appeal to your kid the most (for instance, engineering activities, and technology activities) and adjust your teaching approach accordingly.
If your kids learn new things with genuine interest, that will activate the prefrontal cortex, which is known as a center of creativity. It will positively influence the child’s development and benefit your child in the long run.
Give your kids free time and space
Here is the problem. Some parents tend to overdo homeschooling and afterschooling. They try to engage their kids in 1,001 activities, and, as a result, kids have no time to rest and explore the world on their own.
For boosting creativity, it’s important to give children freedom. Your son and daughter must have at least one hour a day to spend the way they like. And they should have a dedicated spot in the house where most of the art and creative explorations take place.
Keep that in mind when planning activities for your kids for the next week and the next month.
Encourage kids to spend time in nature
Modern children spend most of their day indoors interacting with media and technology. To be creative, they should step out outside and enjoy being out in nature.
The results of multiple studies show that the more time kids spend outdoors, the higher their creative skills are. So try to limit screen time and do the following:
- Take your kids for a walk daily.
- Choose camping and hiking over indoor activities like visiting shopping malls and cinemas.
- Let your kids play with mud, touch leaves, and come closer to the objects they want to explore. Let your kids get dirty and enjoy the beauty of nature to the fullest.
You should remember one important thing: creativity can’t be forced, but it can be invited.
If your kids don’t want to work on creative tasks, don’t force them. Find another way to improve their skills.
Be supportive, become a role model, and you will achieve outstanding results.
Author’s BIO: Bridgette Hernandez is an education expert at BestEssaysEducation and writer at TrustMyPaper. She believes that the future success of the child depends largely on early childhood education. She encourages parents to support and educate their kids to help them thrive in life.