Creativity: how to nurture your child’s [and yours!]


creative self-decorating

Creativity is the ability to put your thoughts into a form or format so that others can see, read or hear what one is thinking.  As such, creativity is unique to each individual.

                 [this child decorated himself]

Children are seen as being more creative than adults but that’s mostly due to the fact that many children have not yet been told they have to stop playing!

Playing IS creating.

We don't stop playing because we grow old; we grow old because we stop playing.  George Bernard Shaw

I also say that we don’t stop being creative as we grow old; we become less creative because we stop playing.

All humans are creative.  It’s part of our psyche and why we, as a civilization, have advanced so far.  Encouraging your child to play, and to thus create, is not just good for your child as a child – it will encourage your child to keep playing and creating as she or he grows into adulthood.

So how do you nurture your child’s creativity?

By doing these with your child:

  • playing
  • exploring
  • singing
  • reading
  • acting
  • listening to music
  • visiting museums
  • writing

There is nothing wrong with play or any of the above activities, and this is something you need to keep in your parenting head because the neighbors and well meaning “others” will certainly try to encourage you to make your child “buckle down” and do something “useful.”

And it will be good for you, the parent too!One of the worst things that happens as we get older, is that we tend to lose our childish joy in life – or we are taught along the way that it is silly to giggle at what happens in our lives.

We are told to “act our ages” or “act like a grown-up” or even “stop acting like a child.”  As children, we hear these words and I think we decide that adulthood must be relatively fun-less and devoid of humor.

And does this lead to a lessening of our creativity and creative impulses?

Yes – ultimately we lose that spark of creativity we had as children.

But by doing what is in the list above, you can nurture your child’s creativity.

Music, art, and literature expand our minds.  Exploring the world leads to many interesting discoveries for a child – and maybe for the adult.  Listen to how your child describes the world around and encourage even more fanciful words….don’t worry about so-called reality.

Be a playful parent.  Be a silly parent.

Be a good role model for creativity.


Comments? Thank you!

About the author 

Lynn Dorman, Ph.D.

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