Children love to be creative and nurturing and encouraging their creativity will increase this attribute and brings with it a host of other benefits. Some of these benefits include developing their senses, body development and motor skills, and it also gets their minds and brains working as they think up new things. It also helps their social skills as they interact with others, and increases their confidence as they learn how to express themselves better and clearer. It is also a fun alternative to staring at iPads all day! So, to help bring about these benefits, here are some suggestions for encouraging creativity in children through art.
These can be as cheap and simple, or as complex as you like. Young children will be happy using the most basic items, so there is no need to go overboard when preparing a creative activity for them.
Some common materials include:
Paint – water-based paint works best as it can be cleaned more easily
Markers (whiteboard markers as they wash off a lot easier than permanent markers)
Shoe boxes – for dioramas
Chalk and board
When it comes to materials try to keep an open mind as kids can find enjoyment and creative inspiration in the smallest things such as leaves, sand, paint, anything really. The options are endless.
The sky is the limit when it comes to art projects and a quick internet search will provide you with examples of thousands of projects if you ever need some fresh ideas. Here are a few to get you started:
Shoe box dioramas
Make your own puppets and theatre
Painting with feet/hands
Decorate hard boiled eggs
Make Your Own Playdough
Here is a very simple way of creating your own playdough. It is a fantastic activity for children because they can use the final product to make things, and they can also help with creating the dough in the first place. You can see how we got on making playdough in this earlier post.
One cup of flour
Half a cup of warm water
A few drops of food colouring
One-quarter cup of salt
Mix the flour and salt in one bowl.
Mix the water and the food colouring in a separate bowl.
Pour the coloured water into the mixed flour and salt slowly, stirring as you do so. Use your hands to mix everything together until the flour has absorbed. Add extra flour or water if needed for the desired consistency.
Hopefully, this has given you some ideas to start planning creative activities. One thing to consider is not to worry if the outcome is not what you originally had in mind when you planned it. If children deviate from the instructions it isn’t the end of the world and it can be beneficial for them if they do so, as it will build their confidence to be even more creative in the future.