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Friday, July 27, 2007

Are we channeling our child’s creativity?

‘No’, ‘Don’t’, ‘Stop’, ‘Sit quietly’, ‘Out of the way’, ‘Don’t mess’
Familiar words aren’t they? How many times we let kids be just that and not try to make them behave like semi adults? Rarely!! We are either over protective of the kids, our material possessions and our sanity or too tired to clear the mess after them or plain impatient. And the more we try to prevent them from doing something the harder they try to make sure they do the same.
I did exactly like that and one fine day realized that I am transforming more and more into a tyrant mom rather than the cool, hip mom I always intended to be. And I was not helping one bit in maintaining decorum as the double trouble found had their own methods of getting their way. Somewhere down the line, after motherhood, the real me got lost. I was no longer the same "Itchy Aunty" for whom the kids in the complex used to wait so that they could ask silly pun-lined quiz or tell PJs or discuss the curent story book they were reading.

Time to chill!

Principle 1
If you cannot beat them then join them
They love opening the drawers. I emptied the lower drawers and filled them with their toys and locked the others. Win-win situation.
Sometimes they cry when they can’t get things right like buckling/ unbuckling the belt. Lend them a helping hand.
Principle 2
Don’t stop or mollycoddle, attract with distraction
Take out puzzle or a toy and start playing with it as if it is the most interesting thing in the world, preferably turn your back against them. You bet they will sneak up behind you and join the fun
Principle 3
Time Out
No mine is not -stand in the corner. They will probably think it is some other game. Mine is “time to show belly button or chubby cheeks”. They just drop whatever they were doing or whatever tantrum they were throwing and play along.
Principle 4
Put on their shoes and send/ take them out and have a nice time pointing at various stuffs.
Notes for future
Creative Play when they are bored
1. Scrap Book/ Collage making- mess up with pictures, cutting, pasting and cataloging.
2. Greeting Card making- we could even get the good ones scanned and printed
3. Story telling/ writing/ read and explain the story to me- an aunt used to ask my cousin to write his own story and he used to be quite imaginative for his age
4. Play with Clay
5. My favourite- jigsaw puzzles, jumbles, word games, building blocks, 20 questions, dumb charades
6. Drawing, Painting, Coloring book
7. Kinder – Garden- Nurture a plant, even if it’s a money plant in the bottle or a 9 o’clock rose in the pot. The easier the better.
8. Simple tasks- re arrange the cupboard/ book rack/ kitchen shelf in a self planned order- all whites together or all English books together etc. There is something extremely therapeutic about cleaning and re organizing.
9. Count up your collection in the piggy bank, buy something out of it.
10. Go shopping
11. Monopoly
12. Music- sing, play or listen
PS to self-Don’t forget the activities need to include you or hubby or both


Something to Say said...

You know- my belief is that kids get into this 'keeda' mood as I call it - where they need to experiment with everything - when they are bored out of their minds. So they want to explore new stuff..and mostly the stuff is what is out of bounds for yes th list is good - of what all activities one can engage them in....I think the more strenuous/energy consuming - the better - esp for boys.
Great post again itchy

Collection Of Stars said...

Agreed! When you cannot beat them, join them :)

Kodi's Mom said...

nice list! I like principle 3 the best -and some more suggestions for your list, water play- splashing around in water or pouring water from one vessel to another, playing withh dry beans - counting, putting them in little containers, role playing with dolls.

Jayashree said...

I keep telling myself the same just let her be. Nice ideas for keeping them entertained i future.

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WhatsInAName said...

Great list :) but are you sure about shopping?

Sue said...

You're right, we need to stop getting irritated and start getting creative.

I like your list, by the way. My son's too young for most of it, but some suggestions are definitely useful even for a 10 mo.

Still searching said...

Although I'm not married, and dont have kids, I think its very useful to read these kinds of posts on your blog... Just to get an idea of what it will be liike and what to do! I think when the time comes, I'll probably end up reading your blog along with the other parental guidance books! :))

mommyof2 said...

My thoughts exactly! All day I hear myself saying no to them and feeling guilty later. Good thing we found a solution, still it will take atleast 2 weeks before they will stop hearing me saying that..:-)

Gauri said...

Good One Itchy !!

Kids can get amazingly creative - with barely a little something to work with - if we let them, that is :-))

And a good way for parents to take a "breather" is to start them playing "simon says". When you need a break, just say, Simon says be quiet for five minutes.
They think it is part of the game and the parent in question gets a much needed break :-)))

Just Like That said...

Nice post, Itchy!

Fuzzylogic said...

Pretty good suggestions Itchy!My house needs cleaning half the time because this mom here ends up joining in the fun rather than forbidding her little one. You have given some more good ideas to keep her occupied.

Swati said...

Excellent list. Add me to your Fan list :)
Putting you up on my page :)

SUR NOTES said...

lovely list. i TRY to do most of the things too. but did not think of number three- stealing that tip right away while the little girl spills more water on the floor!

lumi said...

While it's great to encourage creativity in kids, you still have to teach them boundaries as well-but that's just me.

Two of our favorite fun things when mini-me was little was playing with shaving foam from the can on the kitchen drainboard...finger painting without the huge mess and easy clean up. The other was go crazy for blowing bubbles and there is scarcely an adult who won't crack a smile at bubbles.