Creativity is embedded in many aspects of our lives but often this heading is misleading. The assumption is that the ability to be creative means producing something related to art or craft. What most of us fail to realize is that our experiences, emotional and practical will frequently have a degree of creativity embedded in them.
One of the most influential aspects of our life is education. This is where knowledge is compartmentalized under specific headings. Mathematics, Science, Literature are generally held in high status whilst Art, Design and other subjects are not perceived in the same way. It has always seemed misleading to me to categorize knowledge within such specific, stand alone boxes. Subject matter, regardless of title is interlinked. Often we are led astray by the narrowness that confines us to a specific perspective instead of allowing us to ‘Think outside the box’. That is , thinking creatively. Without creativity development would be stifled but that is a discussion for another day. Let us consider the foundation a child develops through their initial educators.
Parents rear their young infants in a relaxed way. Not aiming for targets but simply sharing life’s experiences. They may sing to them, rhyming, chanting and nurturing through an approach that employs ‘Motherese’ This is a kind of language and intonation carers employ when talking to or traveling with or living alongside their infants. Parent and child counting as they travel up and down stairs, looking through the bannisters, viewing the world through a different perspective. The beginnings of mathematical language and concepts are developing alongside balance and spatial awareness. All without attempting to achieve a yardstick. They apply this nurturing approach to a level appropriate to their infant. Moving on from this, paper and crayons will be introduced followed by pencils and if very lucky brushes and paints. All of this is a great occupier and a wonderful developer of creativity without interference. The child will fill in the space in front of them developing spatial awareness learning very quickly how much pressure to apply via the tool available to them, what color they prefer, maybe discussing the color with you and chatting about their picture or working in silence because they are so absorbed. The emotional response to their own creation is deep and often calming.
Consider a child’s early days in kindergarten. They are dealing with the hustle and bustle. The conforming to routines and dealing with interaction with peers. Children often find the painting easel or drawing table a safe haven. They can observe the world around them whilst applying brush to paper. The trickling of paint that is caught and directed in another direction or……the realization that instead of creating long marks splodging the brush on that glorious blank canvas can create an unexpected sunburst of color……WOW!!!! Learning whilst playing.