Want a Vibrant, Healthy Brain? The Secret is Creativity!
Lora Shinn’s daughter was like every other toddler and naturally, that meant vegetables were a no-no – especially broccoli. Mommy had no choice but to resort to other measures to keep her little one healthy. What were these resorts? She used improv – not quite what you’d expect, right?
“I need you to guard that tree,” she said. “Don’t let anyone eat it – especially not an ogre.”
The little rugrat knew it was a joke but just for her mommy’s horrified reaction, she gobbled down the broccoli in minutes. The Guard Game is now a crucial part of the dinner table shenanigans whenever Lora has to introduce new food to her little one. And guess what? It still works.
We know what you’re thinking: cute story but, what’s your point?
This little mother-daughter tale just goes to show the importance of creativity for your little ones.
Types of Creativity
University of Connecticut’s professor of educational psychology Dr. James C. Kaufman states that rather than something magical and mysterious, creativity is quite easily achievable by everybody. He outlines four types of creativity including:
– Mini-C: This refers to largely personal creativity you experience and enjoy alone. It consists of works like doodling or crafting.
– Little-C: This creativity exists on a slightly larger scale and is shared with people to experience and enjoy. It includes showcasing your talents such as spoken word, singing, or displaying your creation at a county fair, for example.
– Pro-C: Growing from there, this level signifies expertise in creativity. It includes finding financial success on the basis of your creative talents and skills.
– Big-C: At the highest level sits the creative genius. Now, genius is subjective, and what is considered brilliant by one might not be given the same status by another.
Boosting Your Kid’s Creativity
Just because your kid displays one type of creativity in their early stages doesn’t mean they can’t level up. Try one (or all) of the following activities suggested by Dr. Kaufman to boost creativity:
Exercising Constraints: Some studies show that posing a challenge in the form of constraints leads to better outcomes. For example, instead of asking your child to write a poem, give them a couple of nouns to include in their writing. The latter will bear better results.
Changing Surroundings: Drexel University’s professor of psychological and brain science Dr. John Kounios states that striking music, loud colors, and sharp edges can limit creativity. Try to place your kids in a room with high ceilings or even outdoors to help get their creative juices flowing.
Daydreaming: People on average spend 30% of their day daydreaming – and it’s completely normal. This is your brain’s default mode which is characterized by spontaneous thoughts, imagination, and you guessed it, daydreaming.
Seeking Solutions: This practice greatly aids in increasing the power of insight. Your brain’s neural reward processing signal spurs to life when you solve a mystery or uncover a new connection. Performing research, solving a murder mystery, or working on puzzles all help in that regard.
Sleeping!: The last – and probably most unbelievable – thing you can do to increase creativity is sleep. This helps your brain process problems subconsciously, purge helpful notions, and even boosts the mood.
With all these new activities to sharpen your kid’s creative abilities, you should have yourself a creative genius in no time! Okay, we know it’s not that simple but, you gotta start somewhere, right? Good luck!
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