Creativity Boosting Tips for Tweens & Teens

In a world full of evolution, there is a pressing need to do our best to prepare today's children for the future that we cannot foresee.

Many careers that young children will choose upon graduation have yet to be invented. However, for young children to adapt, they need to critically analyze and assess their environment, options, and consequences for a brighter future.

In addition, to think critically, students must be encouraged to be creative and look for multiple solutions to the problems presented to them. Creativity has not always been associated with problem-solving, critical reflection, or problem-finding. However, today educators are beginning to realize that unless we teach children to think and like to solve problems, there will be impacts that will leave many people unprepared to enter the workforce market that requires high-skilled workers.

Decades ago, the study of creativity was considered of interest to researchers, and very few were interested in the study of creativity. However, nowadays, the study of creativity is well established. 

What do you mean by creativity?

 Each time you define, you come up with a new definition. Often, society interprets creativity as synonymous with artistic expression (Prentice, 2000; Eckhoff, 2011; Saracho, 2012); it has been interpreted as the product of brilliant individuals. Correspondingly, other researchers view creativity as an inherent characteristic only a few possess and only be studied retrospectively by highly knowledgeable individuals.

In simple words, one such definition of creativity is the ability to make or otherwise bring into existence something new, whether a new solution to a problem, a new method or device, or a new artistic object or form. 

How can you boost creativity in teens and tweens? We have enlisted some popular tips recommended by experts and parents across the globe.

Know your kids more

Become better acquainted with your children. Find the things they love, give them an incredible amount of joy, the things they enjoy doing, and the areas where they excel. These gifts are specific to each child/teenager and will most likely play an active role in their upliftment. Check whether they like music or create stories with their imagination? Do they like drawing, painting, or cart & craft? Give them plenty of opportunities to take advantage of and practice.

Provide opportunities for creative thinking at home

Read excellent literature and poetry together. Play classical music throughout your home. Find ways to exhibit your adolescents to great masterpieces of art, often. Teach them many creative skills, such as cooking, baking, gardening, stitching, crocheting, woodworking, and more.

Offer creative opportunities outside the home

 Find local tutors/art classes if your kids love music, painting, or drawing. Invest in their learning and help them explore their creative potential in various ways.Expose them to people's beauty through arts and culture.

Explore art and history museums, attend symphonies, attend plays, visit historical sites, and more. Let them know about different cultures around the world. Find out which ethnic groups are closest to you. Visit their restaurants and shop at marketplaces. If possible, send your adolescents to specific missions. You can also ask them to watch DVDs or share videos that bring other cultures and stories to your home.

Allow them to express themselves in their clothing

Giving children the freedom to express themselves through their clothes, jewellery and hair; is another way to nourish their creativity. You can like or dislike their choices or styles; however, it is a critical element in finding themselves and showing/telling the world that they are unique and creative.

Have them decorate their room

Provide your teens with the artistic license to express their creativity through decorating their space, even if they share a room with a sibling or it is their own space.

Create a safe, welcoming environment for them

Your children/teenagers should have the liberty to explore their creativity without fear of rejection or ridicule. They should realize that they may make mistakes, flops, and even bad choices, but they will always have a safe place with them. Offer them advice, encouragement, and only constructive criticism. However, above all, let them know how valuable and vital they and their art are to you.

Praise efforts

Pay attention to the efforts of your teens as they try new things or show creative thinking. Children and adolescents frequently need the verbal affirmation of their parents more than anyone else. They should be commended for their resourcefulness and open thinking. Every time they take the lead in solving a problem or developing a new way of doing something typical, it is a win. It is more critical for them to feel appreciated for their hard work than the outcome. If you want to praise their achievements, consider letting your child hear you compliment their success to somebody else.

Normalize committing mistakes

Most children, or let us say teenagers, hesitate to show their creativity because of fear of failure. If you prove that making mistakes essential to their learning is okay, they will be more willing to try something innovative. If your kids try something new, you should praise them for their hard work even if they fail. Rather than scolding, make sure you point out that it is just that their efforts are not reasonable, for now.

Using the word now can reassure them that while they might be in trouble, you believe they can reach something great if they are persistent. You can also guide them through what happened and what can be done.

Use technology

Adolescents are often glued to their screens, so why not use them for their benefit. A great way to ensure children find creative projects is via YouTube. Discuss their interests, watch YouTube videos, and then recreate them. You can find tutorials about almost everything online, cake decoration, playing the guitar, sewing, dancing, encoding a video game, and much more.

Break Convention

Turn your home into a safe place to go against standards by doing unconventional activities in your family. Every once in a while put the rules aside and do something out of the ordinary. Grab some dessert for dinner. Challenge everyone to stand as late as possible (the weekend without obligation, of course). Announce an opposite day on which everyone is expected to do the opposite of their everyday activities. Helping kids understand that diverging thinking requires challenging typical ways of doing things can spark them to invest in more creative businesses.

Identify a passion

Allow your tween to discover activities that nurture their imagination. We do not mean painting a masterpiece or playing a musical instrument like a maestro by creativity. Allow them to learn how to cook, bake a cake, take colouring skills to a new level or write thoughts and dreams in a journal all count. It may help identify their passion.

Give tweens "personal" space 

Several pieces of research assert that individuals are more creative when they have privacy and are not interrupted. Pam Allyn, author and literacy expert, states that giving tweens space for creating is essential. "The key is for your child to feel like they have power over their space," she adds. Give your tween the space to discover, experiment, and improvise without worrying about mistakes or hovering supervision.

Also, give your tween unstructured time without scheduled activities for some free and healthy mental state. While pretend play is essential for toddlers and younger kids; daydreaming serves a similar purpose for tweens. It allows them to zone into their inner world and helps them plan the future, generate ideas, regulates emotions, and kick-start creativity.

Encourage problem-solving

Give your children time to think and rethink the apparent responses when a problem arises. The creative process revolves around problem-solving, so make probing assumptions part of your daily process. Learning how to pose questions is an invaluable skill that adolescents will use throughout their lives. Equally important is to help your adolescent learn the timing when questioning general beliefs. After all, it is knowing what questions to ask and when to ask them!

Encourage collaboration with others

Encouraging teenagers to work with other creative people will help them learn and encourage them to continue their creative growth. Help your teen recognize and appreciate creative qualities in others that differ from their own.

Let them discover life

There is nothing more beautiful and inspiring than nature. Take your teens to the parks for a walk or on trips to mountains or beaches. Encourage your kids to look at what is around them: stop to admire the birds, flowers, etc., or nature's intricate artwork on an ancient tree trunk. A short trip to monuments, art galleries, or museums is excellent. Let them immerse themselves in history, culture, and art by visiting such places. A whole world is waiting to be discovered: a youth with cultural awareness who can experience diversity is more open to creative inspiration.

Encourage people to mess up

Most people presume that imagination takes place in the head, but hands are equally important. To help children develop project ideas, we often encourage them to have fun with materials. New ideas arise when children play with blocks, LEGO bricks, or tinker with artisanal materials, which begins as a pointless activity and becomes the beginning of a prolonged project.

Do have any tips in mind? If yes, do let us know.

About the Author
Author: Saniya Khan
Saniya Khan I am Saniya Khan, Copy-Editor at EdTechReview - India’s leading edtech media. As a part of the group, my aim is to spread awareness on the growing edtech market by guiding all educational stakeholders on latest and quality news, information and resources. A voraciously curious writer with a dedication to excellence creates interesting yet informational pieces, playing with words since 2016.

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