One of the founders of cubism, Pablo Picasso, once famously said, “Every child is an artist.” It seems kids have no limits when it comes to their creativity and imagination—and that’s understandable.
Children have a different take on the world. They’re bolder and fiercer, and unlike adults, they are not constrained yet by a lot of self-limiting beliefs.
Even better, creativity offers a lot of physical and mental benefits. As a form of free play, it keeps them active and promotes socialization. In 2016, a study by the University of Otago revealed that everyday creative activities encourage increased well-being. They are more flourishing and enthusiastic.
Being creative is also one of the primary ingredients for plenty of life skills. These include problem-solving, innovation, communication, and even empathy. But Picasso also continued that the challenge is how to keep the same childlike creativity when one grows up. How can kids these days avoid losing it? Here are three tips:
1. Create a Supportive Environment
Although a child is brimming with talent and artistry, they can lose it when they lack support for many reasons:
- They won’t know how to harness them.
- They may believe that being creative is a barrier to other things.
- These children can focus their energy in the wrong direction.
- The lack of support may make them lose self-esteem.
- They may think that creativity isn’t important.
Parents play a huge role in fostering a kid’s creative development. During the first few years of their lives, they spend most of their time at home. They have the financial means to provide what the child needs to enhance their craft.
But the choice of school is just as essential. Fortunately, one can already find an international elementary school in Singapore that understands the value of the arts in learning and growth.
Teachers help stimulate their senses by exposing them to different materials or even the outdoors. The school invests in state-of-the-art facilities and equipment for those who want to learn more about the field.
2. Engage in Role-Playing
One of the effective ways to nurture a child’s creativity is by engaging in role-playing. A 2016 research by the British Psychological Society (BPS) showed that those who practise fantasy play also scored high in overall creativity.
For the study, the team first determined the scope of the children’s fantasy play in three scenarios. Then the participants, ages 4 to 8, performed three tasks, including drawing.
Those who engaged in higher levels of fantasy play scored well on all three tasks, especially the first two that involved describing as many red things as possible and showing all the possible ways of moving across points A to B in the room.
What did these results say about creativity among children? Because fantasy play forces kids to create worlds different from their realities, the exercise encourages them to be more artistic or think outside the box.
Moreover, in 2018, the University of Oregon researchers learned that imaginary worlds among this group are more common than people think. It seems creating characters and having fictional friends is natural to them.
3. Expose the Child to Different Languages
Contrary to popular belief, children who learn more than one language can learn fast when they’re still young. Moreover, this skill can promote better creativity.
In 2019, the University of Alberta researchers discovered that bilingual kids were more compelling and stronger storytellers than their monolingual peers. They possessed richer vocabulary, so they can talk about objects or worlds in greater detail.
Moreover, they found a link between higher cognitive flexibility and bilingualism. This implies that children who can speak two or more languages may switch between various concepts more quickly.
Children in Singapore have a distinct advantage compared to other kids in other developed nations, such as those in Europe: the country has a diverse population. Although Chinese remains the most common language, kids also grow up hearing Indian, Tamil, and Malaysian.
Those who go to international schools will even fare better as far as learning new languages is concerned. They can be exposed to different types of English, for instance.
Moreover, they learn not only how to speak but also understand the diction and nuance of the language as influenced by the international speaker’s culture and beliefs. This allows them to use the foreign words more correctly.
From science to math, creativity is one of the foundations of the skills a child has to learn to succeed. It can help them grow into what they can become in the future. There’s no better time to start nurturing it than today.