There are constant debates, all over the world, on whether the arts are adequately represented within the education system. Some parents feel that schools are not investing enough money in the arts. However, most parents often overlook the arts in their own homes.
Fostering creativity in children is imperative as it help them grow into creative and innovative thinkers, many in the arts community say. It helps children develop an out-of-the-box approach to their daily lives – one reason why they say it’s so important.
The arts, when taught in meaningful ways, do many things for kids, according to Jessica Wallace, education and outreach manager at the National Gallery.
Develop deep thinkers
Empower people to communicate ideas that words and numbers cannot always express
Provide opportunities to explore other cultures
Teach heritage and tolerance for belief systems while valuing the individual
Encourage multiple responses
Develop creative problem-solving skills
Teach flexibility in thinking, critical for success in a global society,
Teach people to continue searching for meaning and understanding.
Things parents can do
Parents should consider using a variety of different methods of promoting creativity in order to broaden their child’s outlook and to maintain interest.
Having art supplies on hand is a perfect way to let your child get creative. Keeping crayons, paints, glue, glitter, markers and paper in the house can give your little one the freedom to get creative whenever the mood strikes.
For parents who are worried about the mess, consider letting your child do art in an empty bathtub or shower, then once the creation is finished, just turn on the water and wash the mess away.
Children tend to have very vivid imaginations and usually enjoy pretend play. Parents should always encourage pretend play and join in whenever possible. Parents should take cues from their children and try to not control the situation but rather enable their children to explore their imaginary scenarios in whatever way they choose.
Consider attending your little one’s imaginary tea party or being one of the guests in your child’s imaginary restaurant. This type of play can help to encourage and develop a child’s imagination into a tool for creative and open-minded thinking.
Puzzles and reading
Jigsaw puzzles are a great way to help bring out creative thinking in children. Giving your child the opportunity to come up with innovative methods to solve a jigsaw puzzle, without parent intervention, can help the child develop the ability to innovatively think in everyday life.
Other kinds of puzzles, such as visual or word puzzles, can have a similar effect with older children. Puzzles require solvers to use out-of-the-box thinking to find the proper solution. This can help older children by encouraging the use of innovative thinking in day to day life.
Reading is one of the most important methods to promote creativity. Whether children read books on their own, or parents read out loud to their children, the activity will help develop children’s vocabulary and open up their imagination. Parents should try to read to their children as much as they can, as it helps children to develop a better, lasting, relationship with books and reading.
Parents should try to provide attractive options to get children away from the TV and video games. Simple household items like cardboard boxes, macaroni and glue, old bedsheets to use for making costumes or old clothing for dress-up, or anything that no longer needed that can be turned into an art project (even decorating cookies with a variety of toppings) can become creative alternatives for kids.
can also make use of activities that clubs, societies and organisations offer. For example, the National Gallery offers many programme options to give children the opportunity to learn more about and explore creativity through the arts.
Whatever methods parents choose to use to help promote their children’s creativity, experts say, it is important that they relinquish control to their children. This enables children to broaden their outlook of the world and explore and develop creativity in their own interesting way.