How Do I Start Empowering My Creative Kid?


By Beth L. Olson

Are You Intimidated By Your Creative Child?

If you’re anything like me, you probably have felt overwhelmed at some point by your child’s imagination.  Personally, I have never felt like I’m the creative type.  When it comes down to it, I should say that I am rather creative in problem solving, but I don’t have artistic giftings.  I have three boys who are more like me, but I also have this lovely little girl...she is the reason behind why I am writing to you today.  My daughter Zoe is all about animals, writing, and art.  I am allergic to animals, and I am not good at art by any stretch of the imagination. I can connect with Zoe a little in the writing, though her writing tends to be far more imaginative than anything that would ever enter into my head.

How in the world do you set your child up for success in their giftings when you have no idea where to even think about starting?

I am so thankful that God brought Angela Meijer into our lives when my daughter was still very young.  Angela was able to say a few simple things to encourage me along the way. She seemed to be able to see things in Zoe’s artwork that I couldn’t.  What a blessing to have a friend who is an artist!

It was helpful just to be able to talk to someone who fully understood what I meant when I told her about the piles and piles of paper drawings ALLLLL over Zoe’s room and her anxiety at the thought of throwing out any of the drawings because each one was part of a specific memory.

I’m thinking that there are probably a lot of parents out there who can identify with this. This “parent’s corner” is for you.

By Angela Meijer (An artist, and mom to three creative kids)

HERE ARE A FEW TIPS TO ENCOURAGE CREATIVITY AT HOME

Art allows children the freedom to create, explore and discover. It also allows for personal expression, development of fine motor skills, and teaching moments such as cleaning up your mess when you're done working.

• Don't try to control your children's creativity with your own ideas and expectations.  Just give them a few tools to express themselves freely.  (Too many supplies can be overwhelming.  A pencil and crayons and piece of computer paper are my kids usual go to.)

• Turn on some music; dance, and play. Set the mood for a sense of fun and creativity.

• Create an “Art Kit” Tote: including a vinyl tablecloth, white paper, kids scissors, markers, crayons, watercolors & empty jar (for water), sidewalk chalk, and play dough (kept in a plastic bag to keep it fresh).   

• Chalkboards are a wonderful way to create drawings that can be documented by photographing them, and the mess in minimal!

• Create a place to store the artwork so it can be enjoyed later, or hang it on your refrigerator.  Artwork also makes wonderful Christmas presents.  Encourage your child to create a book of their artwork for grandparents and family members.

Here are a few art resources in the community:

Classes at the Ankeny Art Center - http://ankenyartcenter.com/classes.html

Bulldog Ceramics is a fun studio to paint pottery and do crafts - http://www.bulldogceramics.com


Beth L Olson