Learning and School: Standardized Testing vs. Creativity
The pressure for children to succeed academically is greater today than ever, and in the process, the arts are being pushed aside. Parents are tuning in to unique ways to help their kids promote creativity at home. Art will not only help your kids express their creative side, but it can actually help them succeed in the classroom.
Here are some tips to help improve your children's confidence level and attitude, and to nurture their creative side:
- Set up a home studio. Provide a quiet area at home where your children can go to decompress from the school day. Have art materials (paper, crayons, glue, etc.) and simple household items (paper clips, buttons, scraps of material, etc.) available in a workspace area away from the TV or noisy siblings. Encourage your children to create a simple drawing or craft as a calming or relaxation exercise.
- Balance academics by introducing a "right brain" extracurricular activity. Allow your children to exercise their right brain after a day of left-brain school academics. Right-brain activity is stimulated by drawing or experimenting with colors, shapes and sizes, as well as listening to music.
- Allow children to make mistakes. Children often fear ridicule from their peers if they make a mistake or try something different. Allowing your children to experiment with art also allows them to take a risk and experience the creative process. This skill will serve them well in their academic pursuits.
And last but not least, don't stress that your children aren't creating masterpieces of fine art! They're stretching those creative muscles just by playing with colors, trying out different textures and creating shapes of all kinds.