Fostering Creativity & Imagination in Infants
Updated: Apr 1
Image Credit: Pexels
There is a common myth out there that creativity is only associated with those who are gifted and talented. However, the truth is everyone has creative capacities!
What is Creativity?
Creativity is the process of transforming imagination into reality and the basis for the capacity to improvise. As parents, when we see our infant displaying some form of creativity in their behaviours, we often can’t help but whip out our phones to take a video of the cute moment.
However, your child’s creativity is far more than just a cute moment! It is also a sign that he or she can solve problems, entertain himself or herself, and explore the world in his or her own unique way.
Creativity enables children to be flexible and resilient. This means that creativity is a tool that can help your infant tackle challenges that he or she may face over a lifetime. Being creative also helps one to become a better problem solver in all areas of life and work.
If creativity is so important for your infant’s development, how can we as parents nurture and foster creativity in infants?
Read on to learn some tips and tricks that you can use to inspire your infants’ creativity and imagination!
Through play, children explore their ideas and create meaning about the world around them. One great way to foster creativity is through sensory play, or any type of play that involves any of the senses.
A great example would be playing with homemade play dough.
Simply mix water, flour, and different coloured food dyes together to achieve different coloured homemade play dough!
Together with your child, knead them into different shapes.
Let your child unleash his or her creativity to mix the different colours together and cut them up however they like.
Such activities stimulate a young child's senses of touch, smell, taste, sight as well as hearing. Through this creative stimulation, young infants build up a sense of creativity, inquisitiveness, and exploration!
Allow room for mistakes
Often times, parents will scold their children for making mistakes. However, it is shown that children are less likely to try again if their efforts are constantly being put down.
Instead of nagging or scolding your child for a mistake that was already made, show them that everyone makes mistakes, and that is okay!
Raising a creative child means giving your child the opportunity to work out his or her mistakes. That may mean that there will be a mess on the kitchen floor, your infant’s clothes and your clothes too, but this is all an essential part of the creative process.
Grab a book
Reading to your child is a great way to foster creativity. It is also a good way to spend quality time with your child! Through books, children can use their imaginations to explore people, places, times, and events beyond their own experiences. This can widen your child’s imagination and foster his or her creativity. These have long-lasting effects your child’s school, work, and life in the future.
Give your child the power to choose
When children feel happy and rejuvenated with the activities that they partake in, creativity blossoms. So, instead of choosing the activities that your child will take part in, allow them to choose. Observe to see what activities make your infant the happiest, and allow them to explore those activities. Nurture these interests to boost your child’s creativity.
Do away with routines
Your infant does not have to have a fixed schedule from morning to night. He or she does not have to have a project to work on at every moment of the day. Allowing an infant to indulge in free and unstructured play is a great way to foster creativity.
Through free play, an infant is able to try out different things and exercise their imagination to play without rules. So, instead of having a strict routine and timetable, let your infant have free time to roll around, crawl around, and explore the world in the good old-fashioned way!
Keep in mind that a creative mind thrives where there is freedom and joy. As parents, our focus should be on creating an encouraging and supportive environment in which your infant feels free to play, explore and express his or her imagination and creativity!
For parents living in the Tampines, Nurture Infant House has had 20 years of experience in caring for your beloved children.
Click here to learn more about our infant care centre!
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