Letting children explore through creative play has so many benefits and will help their wellbeing and mental health.
- It can help them
- Re-focus their thoughts
- Fell in control and powerful
- Explore different ideas
- Find solutions
- Problem solve
- Work as a team
- Be innovative
- Calm their internal state
- Regulate their feelings
Here are some easy ways to help them access creative play
- Save all large cardboard boxes and let them loose with pens, stickers, cellotape and scissors (if you trust them) – you will be surprised at what they create!
- Save old loo rolls/ kitchen rolls and cereal boxes
- Give them strips of old material, cut out bits of paper or a magazine they can chop up and use the pictures from
As they create make comments like
“You are cutting a door”
“You want it to be connected”
“You are trying hard to find a solution”
Avoid: Praise and compliments – this can sometimes take away from the creative experience and make them want to please you. Instead comment on what you see:
“You are working together”
“You are using the blue pen”
“You want the whole thing coloured in”
They will feel like you care about what they are doing – without being bothered about the outcome and worrying that it isn’t good enough. Remember, it doesn’t matter what it looks like. What Matters is the process.