How to Grow Creative Kids
Let them run wild (and barefoot!)
Our future needs creativity: thanks to technology, every new generation will see more and more of their world changing rapidly around them, and we’ll need creative people more than ever.
While a lot of studies have been done recently to try and establish how far creativity is born or nurtured (conclusion thus far: a bit of both) creating an environment to allow creativity to flourish is key, regardless of whether that creativity is instilled or instinctive.
And this is where brain development comes in. Creativity happens when our brains come up with new connections between disparate pieces of information to create something totally new and exciting. Supporting how young brains develop is an awesome way to allow these neural pathways to develop and grow to let those wild ideas flow!
It’s also clear most education systems are lagging on fostering the creativity tomorrow’s world needs; schools value ‘getting the answer right’, which is essentially about avoiding making mistakes and kids have conformity, rote learning and valuing test scores drilled into them. A wealth of research is telling us that we need to be fostering ‘divergent thinking’ and complex problem solving – on many levels – where there isn’t one prescribed right answer.
Outside of the classroom, there are a number of ways we can help our kids. Giving them the freedom and space to play in nature is key. In his book The Last Child in the Woods, Richard Louv cites a long list of scientific studies that show how spending time free in nature has a huge impact on kids’ health and well-being: both key for creativity.
Part of being in nature is feeling: using our senses to just soak up the beauty around us is inspiring, but it also sparks our sensory system through what we see, smell, hear and touch. This feeling is vital, and it doesn’t just happen with our hands.
Kids’ brains can get as many messages from their feet as from their hands, so letting feet feel their way across the world is a great way to send more messages whizzing around small, growing bodies. Keep that foot-brain connection sparking and active by letting kids go barefoot: active feet grow active brains.
And for when it’s not realistic to be barefoot (which unfortunately for most of us it really isn’t, especially in schools!) Vivo Kids are created to be thin, wide and bendy, allowing feet to feel while protecting them from climate and terrain.
So help spark their creativity: let their feet (and brains) run wild!