Thursday, September 22, 2011

How do you encourage creativity?

Have you ever read about the Multiple Intelligence Theories?
I love that it smashes the theory of the old IQ tests and encourages you to see that people can be intelligent in different ways,
 after all......

everyone of us was created to be different, weren't we?

When I look at my children and their unique personalities I stand in awe of how God created them so differently.

I used to feel guilty about not doing art projects with Jenna every week.

She loves to create....... almost everyday there's some new project in the making.

Then I realised that I didn't have to teach her how to be creative, she already is.
All I had to do was expose,
provide and 

 I may not be creative in the traditional sense of the word.......but I am a creative thinker.
Give me an organisational problem to solve and I'll do my best to find the most practical way to make it work.

So in our home creativity is not encouraged by regular art lessons by mom, and I no longer feel guilty about it!

At times it is encouraged out of a desire.....
She wanted a crown,
so she created one.

I make art and craft materials easily available to her so that when she feels inspired she can just create.

At times it starts off as creative play and then gets built on.....
a block t.v.

I make sure toys are easily accessible too. Sometimes it helps to leave toys, which are not regularly played with, in the place of favourite toys.  

At times she expresses herself creatively through dance.......
 and manages to convince her brother to dance a part in the Nutcracker Ballet with her.

I make sure there's a variety of music playing sometime during the day.

At times she gets inspired by dvd's she's watched.....
then out come the face paints and dress up clothes.

I recognise that she is a visual learner and that she also relaxes by watching dvd's.  Buying a new dvd or borrowing from friends, makes sure she has time to unwind from all that creative thinking!

At times she just has a vision inspired by recyclables and it must be created now!
After all, every princess needs a castle doesn't she?!

I store boxes etc. and supply different materials for construction.......even though it takes up so much space and can sometimes be a fleeting idea ;-)
(recycled creations is not my idea of fun, but I've let go of my need to declutter and throw away for the sake of her creative expression)

The bonus side of her creativity is that it often involves team work to create.
The castle needed some colour.

At times she just loves to be outdoors in creation.....
and that's enough to inspire a little bit of creative play.

I've tried to encourage outdoor play and left my children to entertain themselves a lot........I've never wanted to hear: what can I do now mom?

At times the books she reads (or those which are read to her) inspire her to create.

I've shared my love of books with her by having reading times and books available around our home all the time.

{Jesus baptising men in the river-she drew this while we were reading Bible stories one morning.... just something she wanted to do}

At times she gets inspired by beauty she see's around her....
and so she plans,

and then she paints....

and draws.........a bird's view of it all.

I sometimes set up our dining table for painting time while I prepare's a peaceful activity at the end of a busy day 

We're all gifted in different ways.  
When it comes to arts and crafts I'm not going to be the first mom to offer you ideas for creative activities to do with your children.....
but I will encourage you to use your gifts to discover your child's unique abilities,
because being creative isn't just about arts and crafts!