If you were given a box, a wooden spoon, tape and muffin liners what could you create?
This is one of many activities you could do in the classroom and at home to inspire creativity with your children. In a recent IBM poll, 1500 CEO’s identified creativity as the single most important trait for leaders in the future.
I don’t know about you, but as a teacher and mother this fact is exciting to me. Although it is exhilarating, it also means we as educators have a great responsibility to cultivate creativity in young minds. How do we go about completing this titanic sized task? Well, let’s start with inspiration.
To encourage creativity you must first be inspired and passionate. Your passion will be contagious and grow! Take cues from kids! In a Montessori Class we follow children carefully and observe their interests and activities. Plan a unit based on their enthusiasm. Kids who develop an interest in a particular subject tend to be more innovative.
I like to plan my lessons based on theme units. Don’t forget the importance of open ended play based learning. When you are teaching on a particular theme be sure to have ample props, creative sensory tables, low tech toys, and dramatic play items out to develop and extend the artistic process.
Rotate the art center materials often. Plan creative thinking projects. One project idea would be to say here is a paper plate, a paper towel tube and a piece of tissue paper. What can you create? Be sure to display their masterpieces.
Open ended art center, I change the materials in my art center every 2 weeks
Gingerbread Play dough center, We have different themed play dough activities and new scented play dough out every month
Another way to cultivate creativity is through music and movement. Provide quality musical instruments and cds such as Debbie Clement http://www.rainbowswithinreach.com/, Dr. Jean http://drjean.org/, Jack Hartmann http://www.jackhartmann.com/, greg and steve http://www.gregandsteve.com/. Set up a music center where kids are free to explore instruments and dancing items. When planning activities make room for plenty of movement! A body that is movin means the brain is movin!
Music and movement activity to make ice cream
Cultivating creative kids requires you to be creative however, don’t over plan so much that is squelches your ingenuity! Mix it up, wear a goofy hat, talk in a fake accent all day, do a progressive story hunt throughout the school and yard. Tell a story and let the kids create their own ending to act out.
Most of all don’t forget to show kids how to have fun! Creating + Learning = Fun! Inspire, cultivate, create!!
A little bit about me! My name is Rachel Supalla and I am first and foremost a wife and a mom! I married my high school sweetheart who is still my best friend! I have 4 sweet kids ages 3-9 2 boys and 2 girls. They are my inspiration every day. I was a teacher before I was a mom but I believe they have made me a better one. I have taught preschool and Kindergarten for 15 years. I am Montessori certified but I wouldn’t consider myself a Montessori purist. I have done a great deal of research along with trial and error and have combined the best of a few different methods in my school.
I own, direct and teach at Discovery Kidzone Montessori School I started my school 3 years ago and it is my passion. Teaching kids to read at an early age brings me joy beyond belief! I just recently started homeschooling my daughter who is in 2nd grade because she has ADHD and does much better in a progressive, creative environment.
I started Discovery Kidzone Montessori Adventures Blog to blog about our educational, Montessori and homeschooling journey. I used to be a children’s event planner and I will begin blogging about that soon. I am constantly researching and experimenting with new creative learning ideas. I strongly believe that you can make everything you learn FUN and in the process you will retain the information better. My school slogan is CREATING+LEARNING=FUN! I try to live by that motto every day. You can find me pinning new creative ideas on http://pinterest.com/kidzoneteacher/ or come chat with me on facebook at http://www.facebook.com/KidzoneTeachermama