I like to give the children invitiations to create. Just set out a few materials and invite them to explore (or not) what they want to do with them.
I was inspired in this concept by ideas from Julia Deering’s book The Playful Parent where she talks about setting up invitations to play (which I reviewed here a while ago.) Julia suggests fancy dress items in a box, for example as a great invitation to play.
I love the idea a of giving them tools and prompts without direction, particularly in regard to craft.
This what I left out yesterday for my daughter Lise (age 7)
A plate (99p: Morrisons) coloured paper and a set of porcelain brushpens (£10.99 : Amazon) The pens can write on many objects and be fixed by heat.
I explained to Lise what the pens could do and told her she was welcome to use them and the the plate however she wished. Then I just wondered away.
She set to work. She had spent the day planting little lavender along our front garden fence with her daddy and he had gone out for the evening. They had had such a lovely time. She used all that in her art and made him a plate o treasure. She did lot of planning and practice writing with the pens on the paper and she was thrilled with the result.
As was he.
Invitation to create can lead to really meaningful/surprising/random creations. Leaving the pens on the shelf far away form anything to draw them on means they would most probably have never been used. We have to invite, explain and be around to assist if required. But we need to back off too. It’s all about providing the opportunity.
This was a gift created from the heart: not directed or suggested but by laying out the tools I invited her to be creative. She captured a memory and made a treasure.
Simple and beautiful. Imaginative and Creative. Free thinking.