Everyone agrees that developing a child’s imaginations significantly improves their ability to learn. It also improves the overall quality of their lives. So what can you do to encourage your child’s creativity and self-expression?
Well luckily it doesn’t take rocket-science, just a little common sense. Here are some simple ways to build and nurture your child’s imagination right now:
Step 1. You can begin by turning off the TV, computer, and smart phone! Let’s face it, when these devices are turned on, individual thinking and self-expression are usually turned off! More often than not, parents and kids end up just sitting around in a semi-vegetative state not even interacting with one another. You’ll be amazed how spending some quiet time together with your child will spark new and dynamic discussions and spice up everyone’s imagination.
Step 2. Read to your kids and get them reading. Make books part of your child’s routine. Read to them aloud at bedtime but also encourage them to read alone in their own time and space.
Step 3. Tell stories to each other. Storytelling is an important part of every culture. Tell your child stories about you and members of your family. What things you did as children. What your neighborhood looked like. What school was like in your day. Making up stories is another great way to engage a child in creative thinking.
Step 4. Create and build tiny worlds together. Did you ever build a moss garden or mini terrarium? Creating these miniature worlds is hugely enjoyable and great for the imagination. Allow kids to build bridges with twigs and glue, and create tiny little ponds with small mirrors. It’s amazing what can be accomplished in miniature.
Step 5. Engage your child in discussions by asking thought-provoking questions. Invite your child to express his or her ideas by asking open-ended questions. Allow them to provide their wildest and most creative answers, no holds barred.
Our kids only get to be kids once, and every minute of that time is to be nurtured and cherished like there’s no tomorrow.