Being creative with your kids is a lot easier than you think, and you don’t have to be an artist yourself to integrate art into your lives. In fact, just offering a creative time for your child is the most important part!
Simple creative activities are some of the most important building blocks in child development. Studies show that learning art correlates strongly with higher achievement in math and science. Young people who participate regularly in the arts are 4x more likely to be recognized for academic achievement, to participate in a math and science fair or to win an award for writing an essay or poem than children who do not participate.
Here are two simple art projects you can do with your toddler at home to boost creativity!
One of my most favorite Amazon finds is a cardboard playhouse that kids can color on. It has filled countless hours for my daughter and I to collaborate on and it lasts forever if you take good care of it. We’ve been working on our little house for over 9 months and it’s still standing – although we are definitely running out of space on the walls. Almost everyone who visits us wants to crawl inside and contribute to our creative casa – we’ve even added Christmas lights and a little lamp inside!
When I was little, my mom woke up from a nap to find me drawing on the hallway wall. And not just a little drawing, but the ENTIRE length of the hallway. So with this inspiration for a large canvas, I put up a whiteboard wall in my daughter’s room so she can color on her wall whenever she wants and not get in trouble. And honestly, I love it too! We can change the pictures as different holidays come or as she finds a new character to fall in love with.
The most important part to creativity is to not have rules. It’s great to teach lessons along the way (how to mix colors, how to draw a circle, etc.), but it’s also important to just remember to let them express themselves.
Collaboration is also a critical part to the creative process. As fun as it is to have a new box of crayons and a big blank piece of paper, it can also be daunting. Color with your child or start a picture and have them work with you – it’s way more fun for both of you and you get to spend quality time together.
So bust out the crayons and let your inhibitions go – you won’t regret a second of it!
About Stacy BrownStacy lives in San Diego, CA with her charming husband, silly toddler, two rescue labs, and one sweet baby boy on the way! Her love of art and creativity come from her mother, an elementary art teacher and artist. Growing up with minimal TV time and endless amounts of creative activities helped shape the careers for both Stacy and her sister. Stacy is a digital marketing and communications professional and children’s book author.