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Encouraging creativity in children

Encouraging creativity in children

Devoted parents often incorrectly equate creativity with intelligence. However, in reality, creativity and intelligence are different skills and are self-defining. A very creative child may or may not be very intelligent.

Moreover, creativity is often confused with talent. However, it extends beyond the possession and application of artistic talent. Basically, a gifted child possesses a very high degree of technical skill in a very specialized field.

Defining creativity
What is creativity? It is essentially a type of problem solving. It is a special kind of problem solving where the child uses his creativity to solve problems that cannot be solved by conventional or popular answers.

A creative child has an adaptive and flexible mind. These are skills that many education experts now recognize as critical for children in the classroom.

The focus in the creative process for young children is on the process itself. The focus is on the development and generation of original ideas. Here, the product is not as important as the process.

Therefore, teachers and parents should encourage children to have an unconventional thinking style. Children should be encouraged to have original ideas without placing too much judgment on the feasibility of their ideas.

Children’s creativity is usually quantified in terms of “conceptual fluency tasks.” Such tasks involve the children in some kind of brainstorming, allowing them to produce as many answers as possible.

Use of creative potential
As a result of the socialization process, many children learn to adjust during their early school years. This means originality drops. Thus, parents and teachers must ensure that the child avoids “fixing the right answer”.

Children should be given the opportunity to share different thoughts. They should be encouraged to look for more than one answer to a problem. Experts suggest that creative children are usually engaged in some kind of imaginative play. Moreover, they are not driven by external factors, but by internal factors.

A guide to fostering creativity
1) You must provide your child with an environment that will allow him to discover and play without unnecessary restrictions. You should encourage him to explore every possible solution to a problem.

2) You need to provide your child with unique ideas instead of molding their ideas to fit yours. It’s important to stop judging and talk to him about his answers. You should also explore with him until he reaches a conclusion.

3) Think of creative solutions. Whenever possible, you should involve your child in any problem-solving process. It is not important whether his ideas are feasible or practical or not. Most importantly, there are many ways to bathe a dog and feed a cat.

4) Give your child enough time to explore many options, from the more popular solutions to the more original ones. Don’t pressure him. At first, your child will respond to questions by giving conventional answers, especially if he has realized that this will lead to instant recognition and approval. You need to inspire your child by asking him questions that will make him think outside the box.

5) You should introduce creative hobbies like storytelling and drawing. Such hobbies are very useful for encouraging and developing your child’s creativity. Explain to your child the importance of self-expression. You have to be open minded to his ideas. It is not necessary that the leaves are always colored green. The prince and princess in a fairy tale don’t always have to look good, and cakes don’t always have to be round.

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