Most people would argue that there’s no harder job than being a parent. Not only do you have to provide on a physical basis, you’ve also got to ensure that your child is mentally stimulated and nourished. This can be tough, particularly if you’ve got a busy schedule and not as much time for play as you’d like.
Nonetheless, creativity and imagination are a vital part of growing up. Your little one needs to be challenged. They need to learn new skills and constantly feed their mind with knowledge because it will help them to grow into a capable, intelligent human being. For healthy development, play and exploration must not be limited to the classroom.
Keep reading for some great ideas on how to keep your child happy and engaged at home.
You can encourage your child to learn new skills by introducing them to the concept of architecture. Help them collect ‘building materials’ (toilet roll tubes, straws, cardboard boxes, egg cartons, etc.) and challenge them to construct something new.
Use a glue gun to stick things together, but wait until they’ve tried out some different combinations first. If you really want to get their brain working, ask them to map out a picture of the planned structure first, with labels for each important feature.
Invent a New Superhero
You could spend an afternoon becoming crime fighting superheroes. The important part of this activity is that the character has to be new. Your child should come up with their own unique name and decide what type of powers they’d like to possess.
Get yourself some old sheets, cardboard, coloured tissue paper, and other bits and pieces. Then, they can make their superhero costume from scratch. Development experts love when children take on different characters because it is an effective way to expand the imagination.
Create a Funny Comic Strip
Children must learn how to communicate their ideas in all kinds of different ways. It doesn’t happen overnight. The leap to written communication, for example, is a complex one and it takes some time to master. Comic books are a great bridge between the verbal and visual.
They help little ones to understand that writing is just as successful a form of expression as drawing pictures and that the two can inform one another. So, encourage your child to create a comic strip of their own. First, spend a little time reading and exploring some funny strips.
Create a Family Book Club
It’s rare to find a child who doesn’t like stories. Whether you’re reading them out loud at bedtime or guiding them over tricky words at the dinner table, books are the beating heart of early development. Studies show that kids who read often always perform better in school.
On the other hand, the attention span is not fully developed at this point and children can lose interest quickly. Keep them on their toes by bringing elements out of the stories and into real life. Make themed snacks, build clay models, and write silly songs about the best characters.
Why Creativity Doesn’t Need a Purpose
There are all kinds of ways to encourage your child to get creative and work their imagination. However, do keep in mind that the end product isn’t all that important. Prompts, stories, and silly ideas are great motivators, but there doesn’t have to be a clear goal.
Once your child is making and creating, let them take the helm. If they change their mind about what they’re building halfway through, go with it. If they want to whip up a colourful mess, try to accommodate it. Unbridled creativity is a powerful thing and a vital part of early learning.
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