Posted by: ad65shorty | September 15, 2011

Helping Children Become More Creative Thinkers

My son being a superhero!

Got this in Parents magazine last month and thought it was so good:

Young children have fewer opportunities these days to indulge their imagination and more distractions than ever before. To help children become creative thinkers:

1. Give them downtime. They need at least half an hour of free play every day.

2. Start enforcing strict screen-time limits. No more than 2 hours max per day for kids ages 2 and older.

3. Avoid stepping in. Kids can learn to solve problems on their own. If they’re struggling, provide suggestions, but don’t give the answer.

4. Go on field trips. Visit playgrounds, parks, and the woods so kids can explore. Parents watch from a safe distance.(Personally, I think its better to go explore and play with them; but let the kids guide the explorations.)

5. Set up a special space for imaginative play. Give kids access to crayons, paper, blocks, and kid-powered toys will allow them to doodle, build, and pretend anytime.

6. Be creative yourself. It’s a parent’s job to make up original bedtime stories (a favorite in our house!), serve new foods, and try things you’ve never done.

7. Choose a preschool that values curiosity. It should encourage independence rather than emphasize highly structured learning and completing worksheets.

8. Expose children to a wide variety of subjects. There’s no better way to help them discover their own special interest.

9. Lobby for the arts. Push your school board to preserve (or reinstate) music and art classes as well as other creative outlets.

10. Let them be bored. They may complain about having nothing to do, but it will inspire them to come up with fresh ideas.

What are your thoughts on creativity? How do you help your children be creative thinkers?



  1. I read this exact same article as well and also thought it was very good!! Thanks for your comment on my blog! I actually come to your website for ideas ALL the time, and will definitely use some ideas for my turns to teach preschool. One of Fanny’s favorite things to do is to paint with Karo Syrup, which is an idea I got from you!! THANK YOU!!!

    • Oh, so glad Arit. Good luck with the preschool thing. It should be a lot of fun for you and Fanny! 🙂

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