We all know that children are naturally creative, but if you’ve ever wondered which activities in particular are great for unleashing your child’s imagination – look no further. Here are a few ideas to keep your children happy and creative for hours. Maybe along the way you’ll rediscover your own inner child!
Easy Origami Animals for Kids
With some basic skills and a little bit of imagination, origami can transform the simplest bit of paper into a sophisticated creature. A few folds here and there and you have a duck, a dog or a rabbit. Don’t worry if you fear that origami is beyond your skill level (let alone your child’s). There are many good origami kits for children to get you started, such as this easy origami animals for kids guide.
Storytelling & Illustrating
Encouraging your children to write stories as well as read them is a great way to improve your child’s writing and reading skills. Talk about what characters they like or ideas for events. Once you’ve come up with a story together, make a concertina booklet out of a piece of A4 paper and get your child to illustrate each section with parts of the plot. For a more guided way of developing your child’s creative writing skills, the Descriptosaurus Books by Alison Wilcox are a great starting point for putting images to ideas, and helping kids write creatively step by step.
Allowing you to construct whole cities, farms, space stations with little blocks of plastic, it’s no wonder that LEGO has endured the generations as one of the most entertaining toys for children. It’s a great way of unleashing your child’s imagination by giving them the ability to build whatever towns, vehicles, and houses they like. If you have more than one child, why not hold a spaceship building competition? If you’re feeling cooperative, build a city together. Just don’t get too precious about your model city and remember to share.
We all know that the most fun activities for toddlers are often the messiest – and it doesn’t come much messier than painting. So cover your tables and chairs, unleash the washable paints, and unroll the paper. You don’t want to just limit yourself to brushes: try hand painting, sponges, potatoes – whatever you can find. You might even end up with a pretty picture you can tack onto the fridge. Just make sure you have a good cleaning up policy afterwards.
Messy? Yes. Yummy? Yes. It’s a dream combination for a toddler and it’s an exciting way of teaching them the all-important skill of cooking. Once you’ve baked a cake or a dozen cupcakes, the fun part of decorating can begin. Give your child a variety of options – food colouring, edible decorations, chocolate chips, hundreds and thousands – then let them go wild. For a more structured approach, work together to decorate your cupcakes to look like a famous children’s character or an animal.
One of the highlights of any birthday or Christmas is receiving a card with a smiley-faced stick figure on the front with the word ‘Mummy’ or ‘Daddy’. Making homemade greetings and birthday cards are as fun to make as they are to receive, and a great way to nurture your child’s inner Picasso. While you’re the designated scissor-cutter, supply as many decorations as you can spare — glitter, ribbons, felt tip pens, sweet wrappers, paint, stickers – and see what work of creative genius comes out. For a more professional look, there are many excellent card-making kits.
From cake decorating to easy origami animals for kids, there are so many creative activities that are not only fun, but also great for helping your child’s development. So the next time you’re wondering what to do on a rainy day – try any one of the above activities!