Have you ever wondered why it is important to foster creativity in children?
As parents and educators, our sole aim is to prepare children for the future; Right? And the most important skill which we can foster in a child in order to be able to deal with a crisis is: “Problem Solving”. Creativity is another name for just that. Creative thinkers are problem solvers. No matter what the situation, a creative thinker is able to dig up learned knowledge, analyze it in a new way, and apply it to the problem at hand.
Creativity means having the confidence that you will be able to find an answer, whatever the situation might be. While using creativity can be fun, relaxing, and profitable the bottom line is that being creative makes you a problem solver. If we think of creativity as problem-solving, it’s easy to see why creativity in our kids is so important. Since it is impossible to know what situations or opportunities will be presented to our kids, we want them to be prepared to creatively handle anything that may come along.
When one is gifted with a particular skill, it is important to hone that skill and it is also imperial to apply this gift to good use. At the same time, when one goes on practising a particular skill, their aim is to become masters of that skill; and this mastery leads to repetitiveness. According to research, gifted individuals may become experts in their fields, only because they focus on precision, not on newness.
To be able to create something new, one must possess confidence in their ability to deal with failure. This confidence stems in early experiences. The idea is to teach children what is right and wrong and then let them make their own decisions. Failure should be rewarded with praise for having tried something. This praise can spark the fire to try a new approach.
If you want children to bring new ideas to the world, you need to let them pursue their passion, not yours.
What you can do:
- Space and time factor: Children need free space, of uninterrupted playtime. Let this be their time of the day to create a mess if they want. Allocate a specific area to limit the mess!
- Don’t preach: For creativity to flow, there has to be room for trial and error. Stop evaluating your child’s work and allow them to learn from their mistakes. Spend some time together to brainstorm new ideas, but don’t tell them what you think they should do
- Limit TV: Free play is not equal to free screen time! If you want your children to appreciate art in the form of movies, take them to the theatre or plan a FAMILY MOVIE NIGHT!
- Don’t reward creativity: The whole point of fostering creativity it to provide a window for individuality. Rather than rewarding your child for practising the piano for an hour, allow them to spend some time reading instead.
- Stop Caring! Stop caring about what your child has achieved. The process is important and not the end product. Talk about what they liked about a particular project and what they wanted to do differently.
Creativity now is as important in education as literacy, and we should treat it with the same status