Wednesday, September 24, 2008

Why Develop a Child's Imagination?

Children are imaginative. Watch them as they play with their toys, specially when they are by themselves.

The fascinating thing is that they haven't yet learned limits to what they can imagine. They aren't yet stopped by experience or being influenced by what others may think.

When parents motivate and celebrate their children's originality this strengthens them in ways that go beyond developing their creativity. It provides them with self assurance and fortifies self image, as well as increasing their resources and future problem solving skills.

Somewhere along the way many kids are stunted in their creative flow. This could be as a result of family environment or schooling - specially when they forced into accepted ways of doing things.

So playing with your kids and getting them to think of other ways of doing things and play acting will help them sustain and develop their creativity. A great way of doing this is by sharing with them creative activities - building blocks, playing with lego's, and perhaps my favorite, telling stories.

My kids love stories, real or invented. They love it when I share things I did as a child. Or when I tell them things they did.

We were recently on a very long road trip, and the games we came up with were great. The best, according to them, was a story we made up together. They came up with three words. Bat, duck billed platypus and night. Everybody pitched in and we ended the first part of the story four hours later.

As I watch them (all 5) I find that each in their own very different ways are very creative in problem solving. The use of their imagination is second nature to them.

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