Wednesday, August 9, 2017

Making A Mini Mark Twain: How To Encourage Creativity In Your Kids

Written by a contributing writer

We all know that raising kids can be tough. With feeding and sleeping, changing and helping them through their developmental milestones, being a parent is one of the most challenging jobs in the world. But not only have you got the day to day care to provide for them, but as they start to grow and show off a little more of their personality, you have their emotional, educational, and social development to think about too. When you start out, you can often find yourself sticking to some of the basics like sports, but there’s definitely more interests you can introduce to your kids.

No matter their age, whether they’re a toddler, child, or teen, you can always work on their creativity. School often covers the bulk of their academic development and it’s very natural to get them into sports, but you will often find that nurturing your kids in a creative sense can be great for their futures. Not only may they develop a passion or maybe even a life calling, but working on your kid's creativity can help them become well-rounded. So if you think you’ve got a future writer, artist, singer, actor, designer, or creator on your hands, here are a few ideas on how to encourage them.


Although education often gets a wrap for focusing on the more scientific or academic areas, there’s no reason why your children’s education can’t nurture their creative sides too. Regardless of what they enjoy the most, here are a few ways in which education can increase creativity in your kid.


English classes are great for your kids for a bunch of different reasons. Not only are they compulsory and help to aid with reading and writing in small children, but they can also really open up your children creatively. As they get older, the reading lists that they’ll tackle will broaden their knowledge of literature and creative writing, but that’s not all. They will be encouraged to think about literature and writing in different ways, which can also inspire their imagination and the way they look at the world.


Then there are also art classes. Although your kids may not elect to take art as they get older, starting out with art in school will help to encourage their creative pursuits. If your child shows a talent for any form of art, you may want to guide them towards taking elective classes in high school too.


With drama, most children will experience their first formal introduction to the art in middle or high school, but some elementary schools will put on plays and pageants that they can get involved in. If your children love to sing and dance and act at home, be sure to encourage their dramatic involvement in school in any way that you can, particularly when it comes to taking classes in high school.


Next, there’s also music to consider. Even if your child doesn’t show a passion for music when they’re young, you can still encourage it in school. There are lots of different instruments for kids to learn, some suitable for kids as young as 7 or 8. Taking up guitar, violin, clarinet, or even trumpet can be good for your kids when they’re in elementary or middle school.


School can offer more to your child’s creative encouragement than what’s on the syllabus. You can often find that their choice of extracurricular activities can also work wonders at developing their creative side.


Although not all summer camps are connected to educational facilities, they can still offer incredible extracurricular activities for your kids. You can even find camps that are creative specific that specialize in performing arts or general camps that will look to provide them with well-rounded fun. Either way, camp can offer your child another developmental perspective on their creativity.

Glee Club

Next, if you have a child that loves to sing, you’re definitely going to want to enroll them in glee club. Not every school will have a glee club/choir, but most do. When you want to nurture a talent like singing, a professional teacher can be the next step. Not only will your child be able to have a lot of fun as a member of the glee club, but they will learn how to train and control their voice as they develop their talent too.

The Paper

When your children love to read and write, it’s often a really beneficial idea to get them involved in their school paper. With a faculty member there to help out, they can work on their creative writing and get an insight into what the working world of a writer is like. Whether your child is twelve or 18, it can be a nurturing experience for them.

Poetry Club

If you’ve started to notice that your child's interest in writing is a lot more creative than writing fact or fiction, you may want to think about encouraging them to join the poetry club. Writing and reading poetry is a sure fire way to deepen creativity. It won’t be for every kid, but it’s definitely one way to work on building a passionate, creative outlet.

At Home

With school and extracurriculars, you don’t have an awful lot of control over the creative encouragement. However, when you’re at home, it’s your domain, so you’re free to encourage creativity in any way that you see fit, through parties, activities, and of course, family time.


It’s not every parent's favorite activity because things can get a little messy, but it’s definitely an activity that can help develop your kids creatively. Painting can encourage artistic expression, help with visualization and imagination, and of course develop and passion for art in your children too. Whether you choose to use watercolors or kiddy paints, it’s an activity you can do with toddlers and grown children alike.


Following on from the idea of painting at home is trying out a few different crafts. Crafting with your kids is a great way to engage them in a fun activity and bring out their creativity. Plus, there are so many different crafts that you could consider doing. Making things, creating jewelry, and even playing with textures can be fun, but as your kids get older, you may find that something like sewing can unearth a budding creative passion in them.

Talent Shows

Another firm favorite that kids always seem to love is being able to put on a talent show. When you want to bring out confidence in your kids or encourage them with performing arts, shows are a fun way to do that. They can sing, dance, act, tell jokes, put on a magic trick, or anything else they like to do to bring out their creative side in a non-competitive way.


Then there are also games that you can play as a family. Aside from some of the more obvious activities, you’ll always be able to find a range of toys and baby or children accessories that can encourage their creativity. Some of these you can even play as a family, including imagination games that can really encourage them to be creative.


Then you’ve also got your children’s hobbies to work with. Hobbies can often blend with extracurriculars, but they’re also things that your kids can do outside of school independently or in their own time.


If your child has a natural rhythm, you may want to think about enlisting your child in a dance class. There are lots of different dance classes that you can pick from. With ballet, tap, or hip hop, you should be able to find a style of dance that your kid will love and that can encourage them creatively. It may also be great for educational scholarships later on down the line.


If it’s reading and writing that your children are interested in the most, you may want to think about encouraging them to read more in their spare time. Sometimes, it’s enough for them to read on their own. But, you can also find that encouraging them to join a local book club or even start their own is a fun way for them to indulge in their passion and develop their interest further.


When your child shows an interest in art, you don’t always have to assume that they’re going to become an artist. In fact, there is a range of ways that you can encourage them creativity when it comes to art and design. First of all, there’s fashion design to think about, and the drawing and sewing that goes along with it. But there’s also game design or graphic design if they’re interested in tech too.


Finally, when you think you may have the next Tom Hanks or Julia Roberts on your hands, you may want to look into any amateur dramatics that you have in your local area. Drama classes for kids outside of school can be great for developing their confidence and personality, as well as their passion for acting and social skills too.

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