Want to get those creative juices flowing?
Creativity is a key component of health and happiness and a core skill to practice with kids. Creativity is not limited to artistic and musical expression—it is also essential for science, math, and even social and emotional intelligence. Creative people are more flexible and better problem solvers, which makes them more able to adapt to technological advances and deal with change—as well as take advantage of new opportunities.
With a New Year on tap, now is the perfect time to set some creative goals for your family. Here are several ideas to help you foster a more creative atmosphere for your family's lifestyle this year.
- Become Media Critics. Media-literacy skills help kids think critically about what they watch, play, and interact with. When you're watching TV together, come home from the movie theater, or when you're perusing the local newspaper, encourage young kids to think more deeply about their shows, books, and games by asking questions like “Who made this?” “Why would advertisors try and reach this audience?” and “What does this tell you?” Questions can be the catalyst of creative analysis from even our family's everyday media experiences.
- Make or Build Something. This year, embark on a creative endeavor with your family. Start an online scrapbook, make a collection of favorite family things on Pinterest, build a birdhouse, or make a silly video on your phone. Your kids will not only learn a new skill, they’ll begin to understand that the digital world is much more than texting and posting on Instagram. Check out these instructions for building a Cardboard Toy Car!
- Create tech-free zones. Keep certain areas (your kid's bedrooms) and times (such as dinner time, 4-6 PM) off-limits to phones, iPods, TVs, and other devices so they’re reserved for simple down time.
- Embrace You Tube. YouTube is chock full of how-to videos, tutorials, and lectures. If you have a question or want to know how something is done, all you have to do is search for it in YouTube and odds are there is an educational video waiting to teach you everything you need to know. You Tube also has hundreds of creative projects, such as how to refinish furniture, how to make a mosaic piece, how to make a blanket or quilt, and how to plant a flower garden. The options are endless. Gather your family together and pick one or two creative endeavors you can embark on during these long, cold winter months.
- Become Informed. Knowledge is power! Have you ever felt that your family was in an eating rut, or could use a jolt of energy in the organization department? Maybe your gang is not inclined to embrace science or has trouble following through with projects you so ambitiously start. Quick and Dirty Tips can offer your family hundreds of creative solutions from everything to eating healthier to finally creating an inspired and organized family room that everyone can enjoy. Check out all the tips from these creative hosts each week, as well as sign up for weekly newsletters that can be both creative and life changing.
- Encourage children to read for pleasure and participate in the arts. Limit TV and other screen time in order to make room for creative activities like learning to draw, reading a new book from a favorite author or a favorite genre, visiting the library to check out magazines, DVDs and even listen to guest speakers. Local libraries are like hidden gems. Busy families often forget how valuable their local library can be. Schedule monthly trips to the library and take advantage of the many creative treasures waiting behind those doors.
- Listen to Music. Listening to music can change a person's mindset and attitude almost instantly. If your household is usually quiet, start incorporating fun tunes into the mix. Play CDs, or the different genres of music on your cable stations. You can also stream fun and festive music from your laptop. Music can set an inspired tone on a regular basis if you take advantage of it. Don't be shy! Try jazz, classical, pop rock, and even cultural music to set a creative and positive vibe during this New Year.
For more family ideas, visit quickanddirtytips.com/mighty-mommy.
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