Children take every opportunity to express their voices and inner realities, but as a parent, it can be difficult to allow your child the space to be themselves—especially in public! But there are ways to give your child the blank canvas they need—both literally and figuratively. Here are three simple tips, courtesy of Julia Cameron’s The Artist’s Way for Parents, to help light the fire of creativity in your child and encourage their self-expression.
The Creativity Corner. Set up a “creativity corner” in your home where your child can go to work on specific projects or just let their creativity flow. You don’t need to spend much money on this corner—stock it with items from around the house like corks, q-tips, sequins, glue, yarn, beads, and colorful paper. A readily available space will be the beginning to inspiring self-expression in your child all year long!
Spontaneous Creation. It’s one thing to have crafts available, but to inspire lifelong self-expression truly, help your child cultivate a sense of the spontaneity. A simple way to get the creative juices flowing is to tell your child a story—real or fake—and ask them to tell you one in turn. Help them along with thoughtful questions and comments. You’ll be surprised what magic your child will create.
Capturing Memories. You’ve spent the time in helping your child tap into their sense of self-expression so don’t let those memories fade! Use a digital camera to easily capture moments of inspiration and fun, or make it a point to collect some of your child’s favorite projects so they can see them later. Seeing a collection of memories grow helps us to relive and re-cherish, inspiring us all to create more.