No school can take the place of an involved parent. Don't get me wrong; every school does its best to develop the children under its care. It's just that there's no replacing a good parent.
I've never met a parent who thinks they've done enough for their child, so this isn't a reprimand. And I think every parent I know feels stuck between wanting to do more and having no time.
Are their ways you can help your child develop that don't cost an hour of your time? Can parents really expect to develop their child's creativity when life is so busy?
Yes, we think so! We've pulled together several five-minute activities that you can use to increase your child's creativity.
The Five Minute Parent by Deborah Shelton
Those who want a quick answer when confronted with I'm bored! -- or want some new ideas when spending quality time with their children -- can now choose from more than 115 fast, fabulous, fun activities in eleven categories.
Colorful sidebars feature jokes, trivia, riddles and facts that are sure to arouse any child's curiosity. For anyone wanting to build strong bonds with their child...and have fun doing it! 1
Take some time to build a tower, fort, or house together. Legos, building blocks, blankets, boxes, and play dough all make great building tools!
For a fun twist, write down a few items on pieces of paper and put them into a hat. Both you and your child can pull a slip out and make whatever it says. Give yourself a time limit before you reveal your work to the other.
Listen to Music
Music has an unique way of engaging the whole person. Today, music is also easily accessible. You just need a smartphone and Youtube, Pandora, or Spotify.
Here's one fun way to encourage creativity. Select four or five instrumental songs. The more diverse your selection, the better (e.g., slow, fast, loud, soft, etc.).
Play a minute of each song while you and your child both listen with closed eyes. When you pause the piece, describe what you saw while you listened to the song.
Make Up Stories
Telling stories engages the imagination and it can be fun, too! Ask your preschooler to give you three things: a place, a person, and an activity. Start a timer for 1 minute and tell a story based on those items.
For instance, my kids picked a pumpkin patch, Abraham Lincoln, and bowling. I won't embarrass myself retelling the yarn I spun.
When you're done, switch roles with your child. It's important for them to see you being creative. Creativity spawns creativity.
Use Screentime Intentionally
We're so used to hearing about the horrors of electronic devices that we miss out on their benefits—and no, the benefit I'm referencing is not the ability to silence a tantrum in under five seconds!
Explore some of the memory or academic related apps available on the Google Play or iOS App Store and play together for five minutes. Most of these games are short enough that they can be easily played in five-minute increments.
Set aside a small closet or area of your house as the “Imagination Station.” When you're in the Imagination Station, you get to ask crazy questions. Here are a few examples:
- If you could create any animal, what would it be like?
- If you were only one one inch tall, where would you like to live in your house?
- If you could fly to any spot in the world, where would you fly?
- If you could have a superpower, what would it be?
- If you could make any food magically appear before you, what would you pick?
Make Fake Food Together
Those little plastic kitchens are like creativity machines. Take five minutes with your child and “bake” something fake together.
Books and Drawings
Along the lines of imagination, read your child her favorite book while they draw one of their favorite scenes. If it's an illustrated book, encourage your child to come up with their own way the characters might look.
It's easy to get discouraged if you feel like you can't give your kids enough time. No parent feels like they're investing enough.
The important thing, however, is to start somewhere. Do something. Five minutes is much better than nothing. Those times together will lodge in your child's memory and expand over time.
It's amazing how a few special moments can color their view of you in a good way. Every moment counts, so let's make each of those five-minute moments count for our children's creative development!
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