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8 Ways to Encourage Creative Thinking in Children Being creative allows one to be more flexible and emerge as better problem solvers, which makes them more capable in terms of adapting to technological advances and make the most of new opportunities

By Arunprasad Durairaj

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Creativity is more skill than inborn talent, an ability which both parents and teachers can facilitate among the kids by giving an outlet. It is a common misconception that creativity is an inborn talent, which means, either the kids have it or they don't. But it isn't true. It might just surprise you as a parent that their perception is often way more creative than you think. In fact, they might just come up with some innovative ideas to make the world more futuristic than any adult would dare to even dream of.

Since it is a key to success in nearly everything we do, creativity is a significant component and the main focus of organizations in any field. Clearly, it becomes crucial to foster such kind of thinking in kids from their formative years. That said, creativity is not limited to artistic and musical expression. It is also essential for science, mathematical, linguistic, bodily-kinesthetic, spatial, naturalist and even social and emotional intelligence. After all, being creative allows one to be more flexible and emerge as better problem solvers, which makes them more capable in terms of adapting to technological advances and make the most of new opportunities. So, here are some easy ways to help the children in expressing their creativity:

1. Make Children Question Things

One of the main ways of developing creative thinking in children is to urge them to wonder. Whenever you are spending time with them, ask them questions like why is the sky blue? Why does the ocean water have waves and not the water in lakes or ponds? How does gravity work? And so on. Explaining such things to them would help them in becoming curious, thereby enhancing their imaginative skills and inculcating problem-solving abilities.

2. Provide Opportunities to Express Their Intelligence

Another important thing to remember is that even though there are different types of intelligence, they can be developed over time even if the child isn't necessarily exhibiting the characteristics. Sometimes it is difficult to recognize their natural inclination towards a certain form of intelligence. In that case, give them ample opportunities to express all the forms of intelligence and pick up on what they do best.

3. Teach Them Multiple Ways to Solve Every Problem

Be it a math problem or an emotional problem they're facing in real life, as a parent or a guardian, you must make your children understand that there are multiple ways to solve a problem and also different perspectives to look at everything.

4. Trigger Their Curiosity

Children are born curious and they want to know extra about anything and everything. It is thus the responsibility of the parents and the teachers to provide interesting and relevant indications to further drive their curiosity towards the right direction. For instance, they can be exposed to the rich art, culture, and literature of a country and simultaneously be made familiar with their hidden meanings and implications. You can also talk about the deteriorating environmental situations with them and how it can affect the life of human beings and animals around. By involving them in such meaningful discussions, parents can get their curiosity going in a way that they would want to know more.

5. Engage Them With Activity Boxes

Creative intelligence and its importance depend on out-of-the-box thinking or going beyond thinking about the obvious things that we're often presented with. To make it happen, they need some peaceful time away from digital gadgets, which is a little tough these days. You can make your child think out-of-the-box by engaging them with creative games and activities. The play-based learning tools help in developing various skills like coordination, self-expression, fine-motor, etc.

6. Encourage Children to Read for Pleasure

Limit TV or other screen time of your kids to make room for creative hobbies like reading as it encourages thought activity which in turn promotes creativity. Reading can help your child understand and express better, develop their logical thinking, and help them to focus on learning new things. You can frequently take them to visit the library in your locality and discuss with them about their favourite author or book and its characters. This will give you an insight into your child's way of thinking.

7. Give Them Free Time & Space

Building skills in a methodical way is important. But it is important to give the kids enough space to freely explore their imaginations. Let them spend a few idle hours at home without any scheduled activities so that the child can just aimlessly roam around and run their imagination wild in whatever they are doing.

8. Avoid Rewarding Children for Exhibiting Creativity

Offering incentives to your kids to perform any creative activity can hinder the process, resulting in reducing the quality and flexibility of their thoughts. So, allow your children to master the creative activities that they are innately motivated to do, rather than motivating them with rewards and incentives for the same.

Arunprasad Durairaj

CEO and Co-founder of FlintoClass

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