Encouraging children to be creative – whether it be through telling stories in their play, painting pictures, or building structures – can do wonders for a child’s behaviour at home, childcare, and out and about. Here are just a few ways that creative play can help your child.
You can also download our Free Guide For Parents: 7 Different Types of Play Your Child Needs For Optimal Development.
Children aren’t immune to sadness, anger, and frustration. In fact, a lot of undesirable behaviour in children – like tantrums, hitting out at others, and bullying – can be traced back to these emotions. Where children can differ from adults, though, is that they haven’t yet learned to work through and deal with these emotions in healthy ways. Creative play can help children to harness their emotions and use them to create something positive, like a storytelling game or a piece of art. When children know how to work through their emotions, they don’t need to let them out in destructive and unhealthy ways.
Creative play can give children a good grounding in self-knowledge: understanding who they are, how they feel, and being confident about it. Shared creative play – like storytelling games – can also help children to express that identity positively to other children, and teach them how to compromise to find activities that every child is at least somewhat happy with.
Creative play helps children to develop learning habits; they find something they enjoy, improve their skills, and subconsciously recognise that making an effort to learn something comes with its own rewards. This is a huge benefit throughout a person’s life: knowing how to learn and habitually learning new things is the best way for a person to adapt to new situations and challenges.
We often fail to recognise just how valuable our imaginations are in adult life. Imagination helps us to envision and create life goals, but it also helps us to innovate new solutions to the problems that hold us back. Being able to think outside of the box is a skill that has applications throughout life, and the roots of developing a healthy imagination lie in childhood creative play.
There are a lot of benefits to creative play for children, but adults can most definitely benefit too! It can help you relax and express your own imagination and emotions in a fun environment. So if you’re wondering how to start encouraging your child to engage in creative play, why not start with yourself? Pick a creative activity that’s accessible for all ages, and start playing. There’s a good chance that your child will quickly join in.
Don’t forget to download our Free Guide For Parents: 7 Different Types of Play Your Child Needs For Optimal Development.