Creativity is one of the most unique qualities we possess as humans. Are cats creative? Are horses? Resourceful, maybe, but not creative. We were created in God’s image and our Creator is the epitome of creativity. I am always amazed at His infinite imagination, and nature especially brings out this awe in me. I am convinced that one of the essentials of homeschooling is finding a way of fostering creativity in our kids.
How do we inspire creativity in our children? In a world that requires innovative, divergent thinking, how do we press on to nurture that in our children?
Imagination leads to creativity, in which imagination is put to fruition and the more we can be creative, the more we encourage our brains toward innovation and originality. So fostering the imaginations our children were blessed with seems to be the first step. Having lots of time to play seems to be important. Thankfully, because we homeschool, our children tend to have more of that special, uninterrupted time for just that. However, even homeschool parents fall in the mire of technology. Playtime and imagination risk being destroyed and limited by too much screen time, even if that time is spent on Minecraft, one of the more creative screen-time choices.
We all need creative outlets. Boys tend to create with lego, girls with pencils (although there are plenty of Lego-loving girls and pencil-loving boys). We do lots of art and building (Magnatiles prevail over Lego here), but I have also ensured that some of our curricular choices lean toward fostering creativity and innovative thought. Our two favorite ingenious resources are Life of Fred and Michael Clay Thompson Language Arts, which I linked to in my cant’-live-without-them post. I also like how All About Spelling allows for creative writing with their Writing Station component.
Speaking of writing, I’d like to propose that the books written for kids today are also a factor in the decline of innovation. Not all modern writing is appalling; there are plenty of edifying modern choices. However, I do notice much more wholesome writing from a century ago. It seems kids back then used their imaginations more fervently and the authors of the day made sure to write about those adventures. Those authors also used longer sentences, were more descriptive and verbose (or maybe Bear and I have been reading too much Anne lately). So, I make a concerted effort to choose for my children those books that are replete with figurative language and imagery. I use lists from Ambleside Online and 1000 Good Books as my starting point.
Writing this, reading this, and listening to this has made me wonder if I might be killing my children’s imaginations and limiting their futures by insisting on them finishing those dreaded math lessons! I leave you with this (paraphrased a bit from the talk by Jacob Barnett):
Sometimes we just we need to stop learning and start thinking so we can start creating.
This post is part of the Homeschool Essentials blog hop. Below are 9 of the 89 linked up. Visit one, or visit all; I am sure you will learn a lot!
Laura @ Day by Day in Our World
Lisa @ Farm Fresh Adventures
DaLynn @ For the Display of His Splendor
Lori @ At Home: where life happens
Nicole @ Journey to Excellence
Adriana @ Homeschool Ways
Brandy @ Kingdom Academy Homeschool
Meg @ Adventures with Jude
Sarah @ Delivering Grace