Thursday, July 23, 2015

Encouraging Creativity

Our family is sometimes criticized because of how we live. We do not have a television that is hooked up (we have one that we only use to watch DVD's), we do not have lots of electronic games (and those we do have are used sparingly), we do not have lots of toys/games, etc. We have chosen this lifestyle for a few reasons. 1. We do not like the influence that some of those things have on our children. 2. We live a modest lifestyle and honestly can not afford many of those things. 3. We encourage our children to be creative.

 Encouraging our children to be creative is what I want to discuss today. We believe it is important to allow children to have the time to pursue what interests them. We also believe in allowing them opportunities to be problem solvers. It is amazing what they come up with when given the chance!

Many of my girls like to sew. We currently have four sewing machines in the house so there is usually a machine available to them at all times. They have free range of anything in the scrap bins and many times I will allow them to use other material as well, but they do have to ask first to make sure I don't have plans for it already. One of my girls was digging through the scrap bin one day and found a part of a women's skirt that we had cut up to use for something else because of a tear it had that wasn't fixable. She took it and made it into skirt for her youngest sister (who loves it by the way!).

A few weeks ago, my husband was busy building me a summer kitchen and there were lots of wood scraps laying around. My girls had so much fun making things with those! Give them a few nails and a hammer and they got creative!

They made a table and benches for their dolls.

They each have forts in the woods on our property and this was a shelf
they made to hold their "kitchen supplies".

Here was a bench for one of their forts.

They made lots of crosses! One will be hanging in (or on) the summer
kitchen at some point, they have some for their forts, and of course they
have some they can give away (or try to sell).

One of my girls had seen a star made out of twigs at a friend's house so she made her own.

All of these creations were accomplished with very little help from me and some were done without my knowledge (until they were completed and they showed them off!).  My children have used problem solving skills to make sure they had the right height for their benches and the right angles to put things together. They were creative in deciding what to make and how to go about getting it done.

By "playing" they are learning skills that will benefit them greatly in years to come. I love when they would rather be creating instead of plugged into some electronic device.

I would love to hear about what your children have created!

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