What Makes Children Creative, Part 1

in Early Childhood in the News

The construction paper sign taped on our garage door said:

Dessert Girls

Week Days: Open from 5:00pm – 6:00pm
Weekends: Open 2:00pm – 5:00pm
For Dessert only!! Most are healthy.

MENU
Banana Split…..$.50
Carryazah (carrots with whipped cream)…..$.25
Smores (no chocolate added, just graham crackers and marshmallows)…..$1.00
Home Made Sundae …..$1.50

To raise some spending money, our daughters planned the menu, made signs for advertisement, gathered the ingredients, and made creative dessert bites. That afternoon, the family gathered to sample the girls’ dessert creations. Tasty fun!

What makes a child creative? Why is creativity crowded out in our children’s days at school? Results from The Torrance Test, a benchmark creative thinking standardized test, revealed that kindergarten through 6th grade students’ creativity scores have steadily declined from 1990 to 2008.

“Many parents are stepping into the breach by nurturing their kids’ creative skills,” writes Sue Shellenbarger in the Wall Street Journal. “Parents are challenging children to generate new ideas or encouraging them to notice problems in the world around them and research possible solutions.”

What can you do in your home for creative, spontaneous play?

  1. Cook together.
  2. Simple toys and simple fun are the best. You never know where blocks, boxes, balls, and bubbles might take you.
  3. Sing and dance to nursery rhymes or make up your own lyrics.

Delight in playing with your child!

To be continued. Watch for part two.

A Box? Or a Spaceship? What Makes Kids Creative? The Wall Street Journal, December 15, 2011

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