Five Ways to Make the Arts Part of Your Child’s Everyday Life

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  by Doug Israel Apr 15, 2015

When the arts and creativity are part of family life, as well as the classroom, everyone wins.

Arts activities can deepen family bonds, provide lifelong memories, and enhance children’s learning. Read on to learn tips to spark your child’s creativity and deepen her interest in the arts — it’s never too late to get started.

Tip 1: Create Time and Space for the Arts

Creating the time and space for your child to paint or draw, play music, write a poem, or do other arts projects can help ignite her creative spark. Kids need regular creative time, free of organized activities and obligations, where they can make art, experiment … or just daydream.

On the flipside, the development of good practice habits is also an art in itself. Whether your child is just starting music classes or is intent on becoming a “world class” performer, establishing a regular schedule and place to practice can make a tremendous difference.

When setting up a creative space, even if it’s temporary, try to make sure it’s comfy, well-lit, and stocked with crayons, markers, paper, musical instruments, or “found objects” that can be used in the art-making process. And while you want to make sure she has ample time to create her art, you also want to be sure to set aside enough time for clean-up … just like they do at school.

Tip 2: Celebrate Your Child’s Artwork and Artistic Process

The arts offer valuable opportunities for self-expression and can help children gain confidence in their abilities and ideas. They also provide great opportunities for children to share and reflect on what they know and think.

Hang your child’s artwork on a wall or refrigerator, or create a “gallery space;” encourage her to perform for you and have a family talent show or exhibition. Talk to her about her process. Ask her open-ended questions about her creations and encourage her to talk about her artistic thinking. And try not to judge. The process of creating the work — and the effort put into the process — is at least as valuable as the product, and, for many kids, more so.

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