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An imagination is a wonderful thing

Kids creativity In today's world it can be difficult to filter out the noise, think outside the box and get in touch with your creative side. And even though children are naturally imaginative, it can sometimes be a challenge to entice them away from the television and computer and encourage them to also focus on creative and artistic activities and pursuits.

Following are ten tips to help stimulate your children's creativity, boost their imagination and get them inspired.

  1. Day tripping: Kids love day trips that get them out of the house and expose them to new adventures. Consider taking them to your local museum, gallery, science centre or zoo for a unique adventure and to inspire their creativity.
  2. Creative work spaces: Give them a place free of distraction that will allow their minds to wander. If you have the space, create a room in your home designed to stimulate their interests. You can hang a curtain across one end for theatre performances or, if you're more adventurous, leave a wall for them to paint on and express themselves artistically.
  3. Inspirational gifts: When giving gifts, select ones that present the opportunity for imagination. Puppets, costumes and even Lego will foster creative thought and play. For a cost-effective gift, pack egg cartons, shoe boxes, bubble wrap, bathroom tissue, kitchen towel tubes and other left over materials into a bag with paints, markers and Sellotape and let them build you a spaceship or a doll or something completely unique.
  4. Praise a job well done: Show them how proud you are of their artistic accomplishments. Frame their artwork and display it on a wall in your house, on the refrigerator or in their bedroom.
  5. Encourage personal style: Allow them to design and customize their own clothing. Purchase a pair of white sneakers (like Keds) or a white t-shirt and some decorating supplies and let their personal taste and creativity shine.
  6. Little chefs: Kids love to get messy in the kitchen, mixing and measuring ingredients. Let them take over the decorating of cupcakes, cookies and other treats and add their own personal flair.
  7. Décor and more: Involve your children in their room's décor by asking them for their opinion on colour and furniture layout.
  8. Movie madness: Enjoy a day out with the family at the movies. Animated films in particular push the boundaries in terms of storyline and visual effects.
  9. Music to their ears: Ensure music is an integral part of their daily lives. By playing light music while you're in the kitchen or in the car, you can introduce them to a variety of cultural influences – chose a different station each day or every week, too.
  10. Snap happy: In addition to mom and dad taking photographs, let the kids be the photographer every now and then and have them capture special moments. They might not be at the best angle or the most flattering shots – but you'll certainly smile when you see their perspective on things.

When you encourage a child's creativity, it's a win-win situation. While they expand their horizons, you can sit back and watch the magic unfold as their imaginations run wild.