Unlocking the Power of Creativity in Children - Learning Simple Techniques
By Andrew Loh
It is possible to nurture the art of creative thinking in children. As
mentioned before, creativity is a skill that children must cultivate
with consistent practice and determination. You could be a great
facilitator to achieve this goal. Teaching creativity need not be very
difficult to you. You may want to learn and master simple techniques and
later apply them to train children. Here are some simple ideas and
suggestions to teach children how they can be creative and resourceful:
Give a thriving and stimulating ambiance to develop creativity
Provide an environment that suites child to
unlock their thinking potential. Let the ambiance be relaxing and
soothing so that children do not feel stifled and locked up. Let them be
free and outgoing. However, see that the given environment suits
children' age, abilities and skill levels. Let children explore their
surrounding and later experiment with different ideas. The provided
environment is exploratory enough to probe innards of brains.
Exploration always leads to better thinking levels that in turn
fine-tune the ability to think and act creative.
Experimenting with the unusual and intuitive
Children should experiment with the new, unusual and intuitive. As soon as
children ask any questions, you should be ready with your answers.
Provide productive comments to their questions and suggest possible
solutions. Repeat your questions to seek refined answers. Questions
asked repeatedly will always lead to a highly tuned exploration process.
Enjoy the process of creativity and ask your children to be relaxed
Children should enjoy the entire process of
learning. In other words, learning creativity should be playful and easy
going. Never ever, force children to reach the goalpost because such a
hurried attitude may lead to a loss of focus. Learning should be
spontaneous and automatic.
Honor and respect efforts and do not force results
You just cannot measure or quantify
results. Here, measuring the degree by which children master creativity
is very difficult while there are no yardsticks to quantify the actual
quantum of skills gained. It is relative and depends on children'
nature, attitude, and mental status. Make sure that children give their
best during the process of learning.
Use creative questioning method
One of the most often used methods is
to ask creative questions to elicit creative answers. The most commonly
asked question is very simple - “in what manner children can change
events to make them better and easy.” Some more tricky questions
“Would it be more fun if you ride your bicycle faster?”
“Would you be happy if you get that bigger play set? If yes, why”
“How many ways can you use to play with your new toy?”
“What happens if you work this particular way?”
Creative play is the best way!
Creative play is possibly the best way to
promote creativity in children. Creative play is usually unstructured
and unorganized. It need not be rigid and inflexible. Let your children
play as they wish and to their heart's content at least for some time in
a day. The time children spend playing creatively boosts the skill of
creative thinking in a remarkable manner.
Bring home creative play sets and toys/introduce home-brewed play time
Creative play sets and toys induce creative thinking in children.
Some toys may not play fully, unless the child solves some sort of
simple problems and proceed to the next step. Building blocks, puzzles,
board games, playing with clay and garden soil could enhance the power
of creativity. Homegrown play activity could include playing in the
backyard garden, learning gardening and playing role-play by including
Children must harness their inner strength and enhance four important competencies
that the noted scholar Epstein (an article published in Creativity Research Journal with the title
“Measuring and Training Creativity Competencies: Validation of a New
Test) refers to as building blocks of creativity. These four
competencies are as follows:
The art of capturing
Ideas originate from many quarters and corners. In a given time interlude,
there could be 100s of simultaneous ideas coming from all sides. One
should be able to capture all these ideas so that they could be
retrieved later for reference and action.
The art of challenging
Children should be able to solve any type of problems by developing
creativity. In other words, one should be capable enough to be creative
enough to develop ideas into fruitful results.
The art of broadening
Just developing creative ideas is not good enough.
Creativity goes beyond ordinary curiosity. One should be able to develop
any given idea by reading, exploring and advanced activities. For
example, the art of music could be refined by going to a music concert.
The art of surrounding the environ with objects and materials
that induce creativity
Creative environments always induce
advanced creativity among children. The area where children work should
be stimulating and cajoling enough to boost creativity. Decorate
children's room and study areas with interesting and stimulating objects
Boosting creativity in children is a multi-faceted
activity. It is challenging yet interesting! It is never boring too! Our
children fail to become creative just because of our failure to help
them. Children are intuitive, enthusiastic and inquiring. When parents
fail to answer their children something dies within their mind that
eventually kills their power to be creative. The following quotation
aptly describes the state of creativity in our daily life. It is so true
"While we have the gift of life, it seems to me the only
tragedy is to allow part of us to die - whether it is our spirit, our
creativity or our glorious uniqueness." - Gilda Radner
The Genius in Every Child: Encouraging Character, Curiosity, and Creativity in Children
By Rick Ackerly
Every parent wants the best for their child and it can be difficult for parents to watch
from the sidelines when their child goes off to school. But Rick Ackerly helps parents
through this transition with a reassuring book that shows them that while they will always
be their child's first teacher and can continue to see themselves as educators, it is
critical that "parents" and "teachers" play their respective positions.
The accounts and learnings in The Genius in Every Child are so deep and layered, you feel
in your bones Rick Ackerly's forty years of teaching kids and parents how to grow their
brilliance. This book, and Rick, have so much heart and wisdom, you'll not only read their
words gratefully, you'll return to them again and again. This just might be the only book
on parenting you'll ever need.