I believe that being creative is something that is learned. I believe that it takes massive amounts of inner confidence to create. I believe it is much easier to listen to whoever is telling you that its not perfect/unique/awesome enough (even if that person is yourself) than to fly the double falcons and push through it.
I am not a great parent. Sometimes I forget to brush my kids teeth. Sometimes I feed them cheetos for dinner. Sometimes I get frustrated and yell. Sometimes I do this all in one day…
But one thing I think I do pretty well is let my kids be creative. My girls would much rather do a project than pretty much anything else. So today I am going to let you in on a few of my secrets to encouraging creativity.
1. Don’t freak out. There have been many a day when I have walked in on Dylan writing on things that she should not be. Lately she is tagging everything with her name. Its adorable and frustrating at the same time. Do you ever get the urge to do a project RIGHTTHISSECONDORYOUAREGOINGTOEXPLODE? I know I do. (Its usually when I improvise and use a butter knife to putty something, or a roll of tape to measure spacing) Kids get like that too, AND they don’t always have the common sense to control it. Now, I am not saying you shouldn’t have rules or set boundaries, because you ABSOLUTELY should. But if mistakes are made, its ok, its just stuff. Heck I am sure there is some viral pin all about cleaning crayon off of every surface in your home anyways.
2. Give them the tools they need. Ivie loves to make things out of trash. This girl will save boxes and containers like it is manna in the desert. Her tool of choice is a hot glue gun. So I make sure that there is always hot glue in the house. Dylan LOVES to draw, and if she cant find paper at a moments notice my walls suffer, so I always try to have paper on hand. If you give them the tools, then the only thing that is limiting them is their own mind.
3. Be creative yourself. There is not a day that goes by that I am not working on something. When my girls see me pushing myself and problem solving, they know that its not always going to turn out perfect the first time, but to keep at it.
4. Encourage Encourage Encourage. I love getting pats on the back for all of my hard work, your kids want that too.
5. Don’t Forget To Enjoy Their Journey. This is one of my FAVORITE videos of Dylan ever. EVER. It was shot about 6 months ago when she was going through her YouTube Monster High Makeover phase. Please enjoy.
The most important thing about fostering creativity is to help your child see that they can be as creative and weird as they want. It is worth the messes friends, pinky promise.
Can you tell I am on a kid friendly project kick? It should last approximately 6 more hours until I am ready for school to start again. If you need more kiddo approved projects check out this post and this post.
What are your favorite kid friendly projects?