It’s another New Year and time to make some New Years Resolutions! So how might we better cultivate creativity at home? I’m honestly not sure at how to best approach this task, but I think it’s important to work at identifying where our little ones are currently exhibiting areas of creative thinking at home and work at building upon them. Below is my list for Lucas (Liam, if you’re reading this just remember I’m writing this when you were nine months – this is NOT favoritism to Lucas!):
My first is to research how I might better nurture some of the talents Lucas has demonstrated. I’m sure we all see them in our kids but what do we actually do to nurture their development. Lucas loves to draw and make stories, so I’m going to try and help him make some books that we can read at night and might even investigate some art classes.
My second is to slowly introduce the use of technology. Lucas is a skilled operator of the iPad, but we don’t do enough with the many apps that are designed specifically to cultivate creative thinking. I’m also going to make more of our movie production and start utilizing some of the stop motion apps. This links back to nurturing his desire to make stories and hopefully will become an activity we both enjoy once a month.
My third is perhaps the most easy to adopt and is simply being better at recognizing the ‘micro’ moments of creativity. These are those small acts of creative thinking that we might respond by ‘good boy/girl’ but never actually celebrate. A perfect example was last month when Lucas turned to me as said ‘I’m trying to draw a different picture in every one Daddy’ this was his contribution to our Christmas Card. *
My forth resolution is another simple one – cultivate more questions. Yes they’re annoying, and there’s only some many answers to ‘Daddy how does the bladder work?’ (He’s learning about the human body in school), but actually asking questions is one of the greatest creative acts of a scientist and the scientist within us all is probably one of the most creative aspects of our personality. A renown Physicist stated that he owes his success to his mother asking him ‘what questions did you ask at school today’ as opposed to the more common question ‘tell me what you learned at school today’
Finally, I recognize that if I’m going to better cultivate creativity at home then I better get a little more creative myself, so I’m going to search out a creative hobby of my own. I’m thinking astronomy, photography or a combination of the two.
* The act of trying to create a different picture in each card was a perfect fluency exercise, which is a specific creativity skill that was identified by E. Paul Torrance and involves the ability to produce and consider many alternatives.