Want The Kids Off Their Gadgets? Get Them Creating!

It has always been the eternal struggle for parents to try and get their kid's attention. For the longest time it was them staring at the TV, then it was sitting on the computer. Now, technology is such a huge part of all of our lives that they are almost never away from a screen. Whether it's their phone, laptop, tablet, games console, or whatever else, it can be incredibly frustrating to watch them lazing around in front of screens all day long. Of course, this doesn't mean that screens and gadgets are necessarily a bad thing for kids, or for anyone, it's just that kids have a habit of getting pretty attached to their tech to the point where it starts to take over their lives. When that happens, it can have a pretty negative impact on their overall well being, affecting everything from their sleep patterns to their social skills. The question is then, how do you get them away from their gadgets? The answer is really quite simple: you help them get creative. One of the best things for kids to do is to engage in some kind of creative activity. Not only does it stimulate their brains in a way that passively staring at a screen never could, but they'll almost always end up enjoying themselves but more and will have something to show for their efforts at the end. With that in mind, here are a few ways that you can get your kids to embrace their creative side.

Find their interests

Girls on Desk Looking at Notebook

If you want your child to start embracing creativity a bit more, the best way to do that is to think carefully about what kinds of interests they already have. Think about media that they like. What books do they read? What shows do they watch? What music do they listen to? The answers to these can give you a great idea of exactly what kind of creative project you might want to try. If they're a fashion lover then heading over to a site like Sewing From Home for ideas might be perfect. Or if they're music obsessed then why not get them an instrument so that they can take their first step to rock superstardom. Whatever it is, being able to appeal to the things that they're already interested in is going to make them that much more likely to engage with any kind of creative activity.

Think up projects together

Of course, it's not enough to just do something creative. Most kids and most adults for that matter struggle to keep motivated when they can't see any genuine results. Because of that, it's a great idea to help them find a project that they really care about. That way that can watch it develop as they work on it, going from a plan all the way to a finished project and everything in between. Not only does it have something for them to aim for and stay motivated, but it can also give them something of their own to hold onto afterward as a sign of all of the hard work and time that they put into making it. No matter what kind of project it is, finding something that they both want to make and are able to achieve is one of the best ways to motivate your child to be more creative.

Let them try new things

art, arts and crafts, child

There's a good chance that no single activity is going to keep your child's attention 100% of the time. Don't try and keep them too focussed on one thing non-stop. If they decide that they want to try something different, then that's okay. All that means is that they're looking to explore different ideas and try out different ways of being creative. There's nothing wrong with trying new things, and you should always do your best to encourage your child's curiosity as much as possible. In all likelihood, they'll find something that they really enjoy and want to stick with eventually, but there's nothing wrong with needing to experiment a little bit before they're able to do that.

Don't worry about perfection

When it comes to being creative and making something, your standards are probably going to be pretty different from your child's. Remember that this is their creative project, not yours. You might want everything to be totally perfect, but the important thing is that your child is enjoying themselves and getting to express themselves in a creative way. Don't worry if there are things about their project that you might consider to be "wrong" or "mistakes". As long as your child is happy with it, that's all that really matters. And hey, if you really want a project that's perfect, why not start your own?

Don't force it

Person Right Hand on Brown Plastic Tray

Of course, there may come a time when your child simply doesn't want to carry on with their project for a little while. Maybe they're getting frustrated, or maybe they're just bored. No matter what the reason is, you need to make sure that you don't force it at all. The best thing that you can do is just say "okay!" and let them go and do something else. It's pretty likely that they'll end up coming back to it eventually anyway. If you try and force it, then you turn something that was supposed to be fun into work which is the best possible way to make your child resent any creative project and completely suck all the fun out of it.

There really is nothing quite like the look of pride on your child's face after they've created something that's all their own. The fact that they got to watch it go from nothing to something will give them a sense of ownership over it that all the money in the world can't match. Not only that but the fact that they've used their time productively and not wasted it in front of a screen is going to make them feel a whole lot better as well.

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