We’re living in an era that rewards creativity. Today’s children have more opportunities to reap the fruits of their talents. They can make meaningful careers from their creative juices. As someone who wants to parent differently, stretch yourself beyond seeing your child’s talents to getting them trained, tuned, and further shaped to suit the global market.
1. Enroll Your Child in a Learning Center That Encourages Creative Expression
You’ve already noticed that your little one is a chatterbox. They like to speak up, ask questions, and express their views. Your child has a gift waiting to be discovered.
As someone keen to parent differently, start by researching on the internet as your first port of call. You want to select those early learning centers that teach skills beyond offering daycare services. A place where your child can learn to speak in front of a crowd.
Somewhere where their inquisitive nature is nurtured. Does the center offer classes such as dance, poetry, and drama? It would pay off if you could arrange a visit to the institution.
By physically going to the learning center, you can meet the trainers and understand what your child will go through. You can also ask questions about the methodologies used in training and the philosophies behind what the center teaches. Find out if the children have an opportunity to exhibit these skills in front of larger audiences. These will be helpful when you’re making your decision as to where to pay for these services.
2. Sign Them Up for Summer Camp
You’ve wondered whether your child’s scribbles and doodles can make for any meaningful expression. Instead of always scolding him when he doodles on your walls and paints the floor, this is your opportunity to parent differently. Be more proactive in finetuning these messy talents; you might raise the next Picasso.
Have you considered exploring the art camps in your location? Ask for referrals from friends and neighbors, especially those with children near your child’s age. Many camps organize activities that are led by weekly themes when teaching art.
Go through the different themes, and choose the week you feel your child will be comfortable joining the classes. However, when your focus is to parent differently, be open-minded and let the child sample as many of those art days as possible. You could think your child is a pencil artist but later discover they’re a painting enthusiast.
You could be pushing them to try out carving, but pottery might tickle their creativity better. Have you considered signing your child up for summer camps? Most of these camps employ professionals to teach children.
You can search for a summer camp offering art and then ask more about the art teacher handling the children. Look at their past art projects so that you have an idea of what your child will be learning. Talk with the art teacher beforehand to articulate your child’s needs.
3. Introduce Your Kid to Performing Arts
Is your child always singing in the shower, trying to imitate her favorite pop star? Or do they like repeating the lines of the characters on their favorite teen show? You’ve ignored their dramatic shows as you thought they would fade away as their interests change with age.
However, they’re approaching their teenage years, and there’s no sign of stopping. It’s about time you parent differently and focus on nurturing the future acting icon. Your child could one day bring home an Oscar award for their acting.
As a parent, invest more in your child by enrolling them in a performing arts school. Though some believe that getting a child into a school of performing arts is a waste of time and money, it’s the best starting point for a career in acting. Many performing arts schools give thorough training in voice, poise, and the strict discipline needed for the profession.
These specialized schools are usually more expensive in terms of higher tuition payments than regular middle schools. However, as a parent, this is a worthy investment for your child because the sacrifice will pay off. After doing your research on the performing arts schools, it’s always a good idea to pay a visit to the institutions.
Find out details such as the class size. A large class size could mean your child will get less attention than when the pupil-teacher ratio is lower. Visit the learning areas and classes to feel the environment. See the equipment used to teach the children. The better equipped an institution, the more likely it will offer high-quality learning standards.
Find out if the school offers exposure opportunities for children. These can be events like presenting their art in theatres or during school exchange programs. Ask to be shown past projects so that you’ll understand what your child will be engaging in. It’ll also be a pointer to what you’ll be paying for.
4. Get Them Into Gardening
Whether you have a small garden in your yard or a big farm out in the open, your gardening skills can be successfully passed to your child. If they like playing with dirt, they’ll be happy to learn how to weed the flowers, harvest the strawberries, or care for new plants. When your focus is to parent differently, getting them into gardening will have them outside more.
With your help and supervision, teach them to make watering cans from used tins or empty bottles and nails. They can punch holes into the tins and then use them to water different plants. A bottle can be used for drip irrigation, while for overhead irrigation projects, a tin is great.
Experiment with planting ideas where the children can help you prepare the garden for vegetables and other seasonal plants. Purchase some pots and have the child plant their favorite flowers. By learning to garden, they’ll cultivate not only plants but valuable character traits such as patience.
Waiting for the plants to grow means that the child will learn that anything good takes time. They will learn care, as the plants must be cared for by weeding, pruning, or spraying. When it’s time to harvest the crops, children learn to work in teams, helping one another to get the harvest into the barn.
5. Play Dress-Up
It may seem childish initially, but playing dress-up helps children develop their creativity. It also fosters their abilities to connect and interact with the big world. When dressing up, a child is imagining themself in a situation, a place, or an event before they live it.
They must think fast and team up with other children. They learn several exercises, such as buttoning up a shirt, zipping the dress, putting on socks, and tying their shoelaces. In your endeavor to parent differently, you don’t need to break the bank to buy expensive costumes.
Sometimes, what’s inside your wardrobe and your child’s clothes, combined with a healthy imagination, are sufficient. Of course, if you want to get some exotic clothes, go with your daughter to a girls clothing boutique, where you’ll pick out a few costumes. Drop by the thrift stores for some cheap but fancy finds. They can help spice up your playtime with unique costumes.
Though you may want to make the fun endless, fewer costume choices will help your child think deeply about their clothing choices. Their creativity gets boosted when they consider how to use one scarf while dressing for three occasions. The idea is to help your child keep their creative juices up.
6. Broaden Your Kid’s Palate
Did you know you could parent differently by exposing your child to new cuisines? Think about giving them a culinary delight every once in a while to pique their taste buds. Sampling new foods can be a fun adventure that they look forward to.
While kids’ tastebuds aren’t yet fully formed, introducing them to new foods helps them develop their tastebuds further. Some cultural meals, such as Mexican cuisine, can be modified to reduce spices so the child isn’t overwhelmed. However, don’t force them to eat the food if they don’t like it.
Let them continue eating their usual meals as they get used to the new cuisines. If you prepare the food, involve your child in the process. They’ll likely enjoy something they cooked more than if you just served them a plate.
To ensure your efforts of introducing new tastes are successful, maintain a consistent dinner routine. When the child clearly knows their meal times, they’ll be more likely to cooperate when you introduce them to new foods. Always endeavor to have the meals together as a family so that the child can learn good eating habits by observing other family members.
7. Encourage Outdoor Play
Being outdoors naturally triggers curiosity in children. They want to find out what’s hiding under the rocks or where the ants go once inside the anthill. While your goal is to parent differently, let your children develop valuable skills while preparing their outdoor play areas.
Consider hiring a carpenter to design attractive play houses if your home has a big compound. You may have a treehouse made for your kids up one of the trees. A treehouse will make for fun times.
Take a walk with your child to the park and interact with the natural environment whenever you can. Let the child ride their bike as you walk in the woods. They’ll develop athletic skills and let their minds wander as they experience the freedom of the outdoors.
Expect your child to establish sharper insight outdoors. They’ll actively seek new ideas and provide solutions to outdoor situations. For instance, if you’re having a fence installation project, your child can observe how the work is getting done. They’ll then repeat the skills and, in the process, learn something new.
8. Create a Reading Nook for Your Kid
Books are powerful ways of growing a young mind. If your child is still a toddler, you can parent differently using storybooks. Consider reading bedtime stories aloud to them.
This way, they can develop their listening and imaginative capabilities. They’ll learn to say words as they repeat what you read. They also create images in their minds as they visualize the characters in the story.
As children grow older, accompany them to the community library. While at the library, they’ll see other kids reading and borrowing books. Through these experiences, your children will cultivate the habit of sitting down and reading for extended periods. At home, have a study room that is comfortable for reading. Invest in high-quality custom blinds to prevent excess light from distracting the child’s reading time.
9. Allow For Boredom
You don’t always have to find something for your child to do when bored. Many of those solutions are unnecessary distractions to their young minds. You can parent differently by giving them time to sit in silence and experience periods of boredom.
Take a walk outside or do some maintenance tasks around the home. Sometimes, your kid may want to lie on their bed, doing nothing. Those moments are great. They’ll stimulate their thinking because the brain is relaxed. They can create good play ideas from those dull moments and positively stimulate creativity.
10. Keep Off
As an adult keen to parent differently, remember that you only sometimes have all the solutions, ideas, and strategies. Your child is actually in a different generation and age group from you. Their way of perceiving the world is different.
Let them explore different ideas about life. Sure, their problem-solving methods and skills still need to be improved. However, it would be best if you didn’t interrupt it.
You may occasionally ask them to explain how they solved a problem. As a parent, act surprised and impressed when they explain how they solved a mystery or ended a dispute. It’s their turn to shine; let them enjoy it.
Growing up is a journey whose results we enjoy or endure for the rest of our lives. Aim to be the parent whose parenting style and attitude will bring positive children and a knack for creativity. Your efforts will reward you with a child with high self-esteem, confidence, and readiness to face the world.
Learn from other parents what they’re doing to stimulate their kids. Join a support group where you can share your struggles and triumphs. Good luck!