Being creative helps us as human beings to feel alive and joyful as we create something that didn’t exist before. I am sure many of us would say we are not very creative, but creativity is such a vast thing that I am confident that every single one of us has creative interests and potential. Whether it is engaging in music or drama performance, impressions/humour, art, crafts, music, building things, writing, caring, gardening… (the list goes on) it all helps us to increase our imaginations and visions for life, lower stress and anxiety, enhance resilience and contribute to a sense of playfulness and curiosity.
Being creative feeds us, and I love nothing more than to see my children create and accomplish things as they tap into their imaginations. I love to see them use their time, imaginations, resources and interests in new ways to see what they discover and produce. And it was certainly a highlight of home educating them from March until the Summer that grew to appreciate more.
Creative Gifts for Children
This year as I thought on what to get them for Christmas, I decided to adapt the “Want, need, wear, read” gifting idea we use to something just a little more suitable to us. After some thought I decided to switch it up to; “want, need, CREATE, read!” – They all have plenty of clothing and dress up things and so aside from PJ’s (which we get them anyway) buying a “wear” gift for the sake of it felt unnecessary. Instead, a creative gift seemed much more beneficial and exciting to them (whilst also helping us to maintain our gifting approach).
There are so many things out there that are special and unique to help foster children’s creativity, but I chose 3 gifts that I felt would not only be unique to their interests, but offer more variation to play with between siblings too. We already have (and buy regularly) art and craft supplies so I was sure on this occasion to not go for them. Instead, here are 3 creative gifts I chose for my kids this Christmas;
A Carpentry Set – Ethan is very much into building things and “inventing” (as well as his music). The stuff he makes out of tat and junk modelling is pretty impressive and at times…well, interesting. His curiosity over the Summer led him frequently into the garage – tampering with tools and wanting to make things!
I have been thinking since then how we might channel that interest into something more appropriate and when I saw this lovely carpentry set from Hema for £14 I knew it was just the thing to get him! He is going to love having his own little hammer, nails and wood supplies to build whatever his heart desires and it is also something Megs and Alice (with supervision maybe) can become involved with too. As his skills increase we can add to it and buy more supplies from hobby craft etc to keep the creativity flowing!
Binoculars & A Nature Journal – Megs is such a nature lover and has talked all lock down on most of our walks about how she would love a pair of binoculars to look at the birds with (and for other creatures too). I stumbled across nature journals whilst searching for some for her and thought they were a wonderful idea for children; and that together with the binoculars would make a really beautiful gift.
I bought the binoculars on an offer from The Works on black Friday (£4 instead of £7) and the nature journal was £5.80 from Amazon. I am really impressed with the journal – it is absolutely gorgeous and I know Megs is going to get excited with it!
My hope is that this gift will feed her passion for nature and that she will adore looking for things out and about and recording her discoveries and feelings! I know that E too will get on board with it and can see them working together to spot and record things outdoors.
I also like having this resource if we ever home school again, as it will be great as a forest school activity.
Story Cubes – I bought story cubes for our youngest Smith – Alice who is 4! I already know that these will become a gift that all 3 of them will play with and something we can do together as a family too. My sister in law recommended them and for Alice I felt they were a great creative gift to help build her imagination and language.
Story cubes are appropriate for all ages and a wonderful resource to kick-start creativity as they help those playing increase imagination/imaginative play and become great story tellers. I can’t wait to see what they come up with and I also hope they will go on to influence the things they write at home and school too.
I bought ours from Zatu games for £7.99 and I love that it is pocket-sized so we can take it on trips with us!
I feel so passionately about kids being kids and having time to be creative. I feel it is important to create an environment where they feel comfortable to express themselves in arty ways, crafty ways, words, performance or play. It is important that children have down time and time to be bored to be creative and to use their imaginations to increase talents, as it allows them the chance to explore and wonder on their own. Creative play is vital to childhood development and helps them to grow emotionally, socially, intellectually, and even physically.
I love to see the joy they find in being imaginative and creative – both on their own and with the things they play and do together – and I love the idea of gifting children creative gifts to help foster this incredible skill and power within them.
Creativity enables us all to better share thoughts, feelings and ideas, and to grow in talents and self belief as we find ways to make and do new things. One of my favourite inspirational messages can be found below – it reminds me of how unique and incredible we all are, and the ability we all have within us to create magnificent things in this world (beyond the obvious).