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When Creativity Helps You Find Your Way

Posted by Patience on November 13, 2009 at 7:51 AM in kid creativity
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Thumbnail image for j and j board game 1.jpg

We haven't talked about games very much since the last lesson in losing we all got. My nature as a parent is to pull back, if I'm honest, maybe even avoid such situations. My kids taught me there might be yet another option this week.

Jack and Josiah disappeared up into their room one night for hours. They were laughing and talking so I never checked in on them to see what they were up to. They bounded down the stairs very excited. They created they their own board game.

j and j board game 2.jpg

It is a fantasy style game, similar to those they have played on the computer. Each character was a kid, had a name and special powers, perfect for re-claiming your own.

j and j board game 3.jpg

The game has a complete set of rules and cards. It seems a little easier to follow rules and lose when you have ownership in the design and thought of the game.

j and j board game 4.jpg

I'm realizing that art can serve kids in a different way of process besides just the act of creating itself. This little game is a way to introduce a previously hard subject with a new and positive angle. It gives a chance to explore losing and gain strength and knowledge in knowing how to handle disappointment in game play.

Once again, I can see how kids can find their way by using their intuition and minds. Even when I'm not exactly paying attention as a parent.

What kind of role does art and creativity play in your house? Do you wish there was more? After this experience, I realized how much more I want to create a culture of art and discovery in my own home. How about you?


thecheckoutgirl writes...

Omigosh, is that game piece Peep from Peep And The Big Wide World? That's my favorite cartoon of all time!

"Well, it's a big wide world and it's waiting for me and you!"

Joan is our favorite Cusack.

steven writes...

they need to keep doing it.

Jess writes...

I adore the board game!

We moved last year and our new house has a tiny room (as big as one twin-sized bed) with built-in bookcases. Art supply storage had always been an issue in our old house - how to have it accessible enough to inspire creativity but not accessible enough to inspire toddler mess? The bookcases were the key! That room is now our "studio" and the shelves are full of supplies and games. A kid-sized table is under the big windows and so much amazing stuff is created in that room!

We also recently took advantage of the hideous track lighting in our living room and a wide doorway by nailing a sheet across the doorway and turning the lights toward it. Voila, instant stage with curtain!

Robin writes...

What a detailed game they created. Projects like this certainly expand a child's problem solving skills as well, as being great creative projects. They have to work out how the game will progress.

Carthestian writes...

Board games do have an ability to increase the mental capacities of the people that create them... this is true regardless of the ages involved.

Critical thinking for balance, fairness, the concept of game mechanics, the artistic effort involved, innovation, creativity, and the more serious issues involved in such an undertaking as drive, (the fact & recognition of the results of) hard work, consistency, and the high level of thought put out towards such endeavors as a whole make them highly important in our society.

As a young adult attempting to make a board game, I'm constantly finding ways that I innovate and take the audience into mind. Board game creation has also increased my understanding of capitalism, marketing, the implications of risk, and the supply mechanics involved. Even though the ultimate goal was the same - to create a board game - each age group finds a way in which to derive something pertinent to the real world from pursuing a vision. Vision + Hard Work (=/merits) Success, and this holds true in many facets of life.

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