Children’s creativity is their superpower. While we may stop playing dress-up and coloring as we age, the creative skills we develop in childhood are instrumental to our development and success. Kids who keep their creativity and nurture it throughout their lives become successful problem solvers who bring something unique to every aspect of their lives.
In fact, when the World Economic Forum asked leaders in business about the top skills workers of tomorrow will need to succeed, complex problem solving, critical thinking, and creativity occupied the top three spots.
Continue reading to discover ways to foster, develop, and encourage creativity in your child.
Understanding Your Child’s Creativity
Children think about things and see the world in a completely different way than adults do. Their creativity is essential to their development and can take many different forms, such as playing make-believe, doing arts and crafts, and asking questions.
Every child is unique and they express their creativity in how they ask questions, make others laugh, and in their unique interests. It’s important to be aware of the different ways creative children express themselves so you can properly encourage them.
How Childhood Creativity Manifests
Children use their creative minds to interact with the world around them. Some of the ways your child’s creativity might manifest:
- Imaginative play: Playing dress-up and exercising their imagination is a great way for kids to exercise their creativity.
- Art: Kids can draw, paint, color, build, or do any other form of art and express their creativity through that medium.
- Music: Music is a great way for kids to build a lot of different skills, especially creativity. Whether they are learning to play an instrument, singing, or dancing, music is a great outlet.
- Critical thinking: Kids use their critical thinking to get out of the box and express their creativity in a unique way.
You can find creativity in every part of a child’s life. Children whose parents foster their creativity will grow up to be more flexible, better at solving problems, quicker to adapt, and quicker to take advantage of opportunities.
Tips to Encourage Your Child’s Creativity
Though your child is naturally creative, there are things you can do to encourage that creativity and nurture it into a powerful asset your child can benefit from for the rest of their lives. To some extent, creativity is a skill as much as it is a talent, and skills need help developing.
Though there is undeniable value in building creativity organically and in an unstructured setting, you can provide your child with things that will grow their desire to express themselves creatively:
- Gifts: When people ask for gift suggestions for your child, suggest creative tools like art supplies, cameras, building sets, or costumes.
- Books: One of the best ways for children to learn on their own and use their imagination is by reading or being read to. Providing them with a balanced selection of books will set them up for success in life.
- Time: Perhaps the most valuable thing you can give your child to foster their creativity is time. Provide set time in their day when they can lead play in an unstructured, imaginative format.
- Space: Designating a space in your home for kids to be creative, make a mess, and be what they want to be is incredibly important for them to feel encouraged in their creativity.
Here are some other ways to encourage creativity in your child:
1. Expose Them to Various Artistic Mediums
Your kids need resources and to be exposed to new things in order to develop the areas in which they are passionate about being creative. Pay attention to your child’s natural artistic interests and encourage them by providing outlets for them to express themselves.
Using things like kid-friendly clay, markers, musical instruments, and various other supplies, you can show your child many different ways to express themselves.
However, a child’s creativity is such that they don’t need tons of supplies or expensive accessories — a piece of paper and crayons or a few old cardboard boxes are enough for them to create an entire world. The outdoors also provides tons of accessible sources for children’s creativity.
2. Let Your Child Try New Things
It is important for kids to have freedom and autonomy in order to develop creativity. Allow them to make decisions for themselves and encourage them to try new things. You can present your child with a few options for activities you can do together and allow them to choose — in this way, you are giving them power while still guiding them to take risks and explore the world.
3. Take Them With You
Even a simple trip to the store can mean the world to a child because it means quality time spent with you and provides new ways to learn and interact with the world. If you have multiple children, consider creating activities for both group and individual quality time so each child feels special.
If you’re at the grocery store, you can take that opportunity to teach your child about different fruits and vegetables, and maybe even let them plan a meal or two for that week’s dinners. Engaging with them on everyday tasks can expand their minds and make those errands much more enjoyable.
4. Show Interest in Their Creative Expression
Life is busy, and taking time out of your day, day after day, to listen to the same story, read the same book, or play the same game can easily become monotonous. However, it’s important to express genuine interest in your child’s creativity. Children may easily feel discouraged if the things they are passionate about are not important to you.
Taking the extra effort to show interest in their varied forms of creative expression will make a world of difference to them — both now and in the future.
5. Praise Your Child for Their Creativity
When you see your child expressing creativity, praise them for trying new things or creating something by themselves. Using specific language, such as “I love the way you drew the smile on your picture,” or “You were so smart to use tape to add a door to your playhouse,” shows you pay attention and thoughtfully consider their creative expressions.
And while that old box they turned into a playhouse may be taking up your living space, encouraging their creativity with praise can build their confidence in themselves.
Skills Built by Creativity
There are many benefits of creativity for children’s social and emotional development, including:
- Physical development: Creative play helps kids develop sensory exploration and motor skills. The repetition of a lot of creative tasks helps kids become more competent in their fine and gross motor skills.
- Socialization: Being creative in a group setting helps kids learn to receive and give ideas and react appropriately to others’ ideas and actions. It also helps them build teamwork and communication, which are essential in the workplace.
- Emotional intelligence: In being creative, kids learn how to express their feelings and cope with them. Being able to identify and examine their emotions can decrease stress and anxiety and improve their ability to relate to others.
- Cognition: Creativity helps children develop critical thinking skills and problem-solving techniques as they work to figure out the world around them in a way that is completely unique to them. Children who engage in more creative assignments in school also demonstrate more high-order cognitive skills.
How Commonwealth Charter Academy Supports Student Creativity
CCA is the leading choice for parents in Pennsylvania to fulfill their child’s cyber charter school needs. The flexibility we offer gives students the ability to take their learning into their own hands and express their creativity through their schooling. We give students the tools and resources they need for the world while nurturing them to allow their creativity to flourish.
In a cyber school setting, students have extensive opportunities to pursue a variety of extracurricular programs due to the extra time built into their schedules. At CCA, we offer a wide variety of art education, literary clubs, mathematics clubs, science and technology clubs, and volunteer and service clubs to let your child’s creativity flourish no matter their passion.
Learn More About CCA Today
To learn more about our academic programs and the benefits of cyber school, reach out to CCA to request more information today. We are ready and willing to answer any questions you have about our services and how we can help your child.
Interested in enrolling? Call us at 844-590-2864 or complete our simple online application.