Things that might surprise you about curiosity, creativity and kids

Kids have an innate creative ability. They have extraordinary natural capacities for being curious. We only have to watch them play, interact with each other and with the environment to see that. However, this ability will quickly fade if kids are not provided with plenty of opportunities for creative play and creative thinking. True creative expression does not occur unless kids have freedom to be curious, to express themselves openly and without judgment from their parents. 

Curiosity is the starting point for creative ability. It opens our awareness to new ideas and different possibilities. It is responsible for all of life's incredible breakthrough. Curiosity is a trait that kids possess naturally, except, as they grow up, that natural curiosity gradually dwindles. They lose their capability to be curious by growing up and through being influenced by this reality and all the judgment they are exposed to. Every expert that exists today confirm that curiosity is an ability that varies in the population, and is shaped by different contexts and environments. Curiosity can be shut off if the kids don't have the freedom to be - or turned on, if the environment is generative. Curiosity needs the right conditions to flourish.

The best thing of all is that curiosity and creativity are qualities parents can help their kids develop. However,  it can't be taught in the normal sense of adding knowledge and wisdom to someone.  External messages play an enormous role in how kids view curiosity and creativity. Their perceptions and awareness are acquired by absorbing messages from watching their parents, from television, the media, book, toys and their surroundings.

Kids can expand these innate qualities by immersion and imitation, and are spontaneously drawn to curiosity, creativity and self-expression. If we choose to enable and empower our kids to be curious, creative and generative, we must nurture those qualities within ourselves first. We can be creative in the way we think about things and do things. This means being open-minded and not being afraid of trying new ways of doing things. Kids need to see their parents being curious and creative from the inside out. Our kids tend to do as we do. They watch us and learn how to be in the world. Our behavior and experiences will be much more powerful than our words. We truly need to be the change we want to see in our children.

So, as parents we can facilitate our kids to expand their curiosity by providing them plenty of opportunities, space and the freedom to be imaginative, to try new things, and new ways of being. Inspire them to take risks and give them plenty of opportunity and encouragement to explore things they are interested in on their own. Don’t stifle them with too many rules.

Encouraging kids to make their own choices is important and vital to their development. They should be allowed frequent opportunities, lots of space and plenty of time, toexplore, learn and discover about themselves and their environment. Endeavour not to judgetheir choices and avoid jumping in with your ideas. Encourage them to step out of their comfort zone, and supportthem to find their own ways of doing things. This experience can significantly enhance the development of their creativity. The freedom to be curious and creative, as well as the ability to create something from personal feelings and awareness, can nurture and enhance children's emotional and physical wellbeing as well as social development. 

Finally, it is crucial to give our kids permission to be wrong and to not be afraid of making a mistake. Empower them to see that a mistake is not right or wrong or good or bad. It just is! Encourage them to see that it’s ok if what they are creating didn’t work out the way they thought it would. Help them to see the value of mistakes, and show them how mistake can give them a chance to discover new and different possibilities.

Children are remarkable for their intelligence and ardour, for their curiosity, their intolerance of shams, the clarity and ruthlessness of their vision. …….. Aldous Huxley