How creativity can be nurtured

Creativity is often considered an elusive term. It is not easy to define and some say that it is innate and cannot be taught. It can certainly be nurtured. Teachers can invite creativity into the classroom in a number of ways.

Surroundings

Children need visual stimuli. This means bright colors and things that they may not recognize. It means looking at familiar things in a different way. One of the fun things to do is say what else could you do with this. Did you know that a funnel makes a great hat? Tennis balls can be used like bubble wrap for bigger items or children can use them for snowman decorations. It is about pushing the limits and considering every possibility. If a child is participating in these kinds of activities, they are creative.

Quiet times

The mind needs to wander. Children need time to just think and process. Some children will be very linear and others will be thinking outside the lines. Both ways to wonder are important. Children who can handle quiet time and relax are more open to creativity.

Music and moving

Some people refer to this as dancing, but apparently, it is not cool for everyone to dance. So call it music and movement and there are no preconceived ideas. Listen to the music and pretend that you are an elephant. How would an elephant move to this music? Then the music changes, and how would the elephant move? Now you are a penguin,how would you move?

Role play

This is a great way to encourage creativity in education. Students tend to let go and explore when they are being “someone” else. A good costume gives a child a lot of freedom. They can “hide” behind the costume. There is no need to give instructions, just provide the tools and make it happen.

Emotion cards

The best way to have emotion cards is to make your own. It takes some time to get them built up and have the combination that feels right for your classroom. Find copyright free pictures that show different emotions. Diversity is key. It is important that you don’t label the emotions. The children need to create the emotion themselves and often it is not what you think. Children are willing to dig deep when there is no real wrong answer.

Have the children select an animal card and an emotion card and start a story. You can introduce a new animal or emotion as the next child finishes the story. Keep them short and simple.

Hypothesis

This is a word that should be included in every early education classroom. Having a theory or plausible explanation is a great way to validate creativity. The answer doesn’t have to be correct. It is only a hypothesis.

Art

Creating art and completing an art project are totally different endeavors. A project has a purpose. A child is learning skills like cutting, gluing, and staying inside the lines. These projects are important and have value in the classroom.

An art center is a place to make art. There are raw materials and no directions. A child simply makes something. Creativity strikes again.

Creativity needs to be cultivated

A great teacher will help students find a balance between needs tasks and learning assignments and creativity. A motivated teacher will lead children to meld them together.Creativity resonates in the soul and traditional learning gives students a way to express it.