3 Ways to Help Children BLOOM Creatively
Updated: Dec 6, 2020
By Sarah Gobeil, BLOOM Workshop Training Coordinator
The COVID-19 pandemic has brought about unprecedented change to everyone’s daily life. For children, the restricted access to school, after school programs, and play dates with friends has undoubtedly been difficult. At BLOOM, we understand that this lack of usual stimulation can lead children into bouts of boredom and low mood. This is why it is more important now than ever for children to tap into their creativity. Check out some of these ideas to help the children in your life overcome COVID-19 challenges through creativity.
1. Limit Screen Time... But Not Completely
Virtual learning has become a new way of receiving education for a large number of families. This method has been inventive and effective in keeping children safe during the pandemic, however it significantly increases the amount of time children are spending looking at screens. In addition to this, most children enjoy playing on their own devices, such as iPads or gaming systems, for fun! While screens can keep children stimulated and occupied for hours, both the World Health Organization and the American Academy of Pediatrics suggests encouraging as much ‘unplugged’ time as possible. Taking away devices for non-school related purposes is an incredible way for children to discover just how creative they can be. Without screen stimulation, children are effectively forced to entertain themselves by way of playing with toys, creating the beloved imaginary friend, or creating written stories. Children are adaptable, and can adjust to screen-less entertainment quite quickly.
At BLOOM, we understand that electronic devices are still a large part of children's lives. Check out our blog post ‘Ways to Help Your Child Bloom During the Pandemic: While Staying Active’ for some suggestions on apps that are useful in keeping your child active while satisfying their need for screens.
2. Plan 'Spontaneous' Activities
Since children are so easily adaptable, many love the idea of new and unexpected activities. Whether it be indoors or outdoors, engaging activities are a great way to unleash your child’s creativity. Taking a walk through a trail in the winter months or hanging out outside may not initially be your child’s favourite idea, but there are so many ways to make the experience creative. Collecting sticks on a walk to create a stickman or structure is one way to keep your child engaged and thinking on a walk. Setting vague parameters for snow creations is also a great method, as it gives guidance while also allowing for a considerable amount of freedom with creativity. Inside, guided drawings and topic specific arts and crafts are also great ways to help your child express their creativity. By getting creative with the activities you choose, you’ll be helping them get creative too!
3. Hands-On Cooking
Nutrition is very important in keeping children healthy. It just so happens to also be a great way to tap into kids’ creativity. During the pandemic, meal preparation might not be the easiest task but getting your kids engaged in the process entertains them and takes some stress off of parents. Allowing children to create a meal, even if it is from a recipe, gives the child a sense of accomplishment. It also shows the child that they are fully capable of creating something that other people can enjoy. This simple inclusion into meal/dinner preparation will help your child pass time as well as get involved in creating alongside you.
BONUS! Daily Affirmations
Daily affirmations are an incredible way to set your child up for success in the morning. Helping your child create personalized affirmations can help to grow their confidence. Not only will creating personalized affirmations create a brighter morning, it will allow your child to tap into their own needs to create what they need to hear from themselves each morning. Some examples could include:
I am loved by _________.
I can do anything I set my mind to.
I am kind to my friends.
I will achieve ________.