What do you do to encourage your kids creativity?

It’s interesting timing that this article posted on Newsweek.com this Saturday, “The Creativity Crisis, for the first time, research shows that American creativity is declining. What went wrong—and how we can fix it.”

Just last week a co-worker and I were discussing how kids learn, and research topics today. When we were in school, and it was time to write a report, we had to physically go to the library, go to the index cards, look up books on the subject we were going to write about. We couldn’t just skip to exactly what we wanted; we had to read the book, or the encyclopedia and dig out the facts and information.

With the advent of the computer, kids no longer have to think. They just regurgitate. It’s the thinking and researching that is needed to stimulate the brain. This brain stimulation is what is needed to encourage creativity. Creativity is not just about art and music classes. It about using your mind to solve problems, or come up with new  ideas or solutions.

I couldn’t draw a cow if my life depended on it, but I can put together Ikea furniture without instructions. Maybe it’s not a great example, but I hope it gets the point across. I’m comfortable living in a world where I don’t need a T.V. to keep me entertained, or have to have a gym membership in order to exercise.

One of my really good friends has decided to take her kids out on adventurous, whenever possible, so they can learn from experience. She takes them to the caves, wild flower fields,  museums, and other places to learn. To keep their minds stimulated and activate. This will help them continue to want to learn.

So turn off the television and computer. Encourage your child to write a story,  build something, or write down 10 things they always wanted to know and discuss them together. Better yet make it a board game, and have fun, learn and bond at the same time. Turn off that DVD player in your minivan and play the alphabet game, or I spy. Keep the brain active.

What are you doing to encourage creativity in your children?

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