10 ways to encourage creative expression in your elementary school student

10 ways to encourage creative expression in your elementary school student

1. Watch for events and activities that promote the arts— community concerts and theater events, family concerts at the symphony, hands-on activities and ongoing programs at children’s museums, and art exhibits. Talk about what you see.

2. Play a variety of styles of music in the car, at home, and at bedtime. Talk about the music you enjoy today and what you liked as a child. Share songs with your children that you learned when you were younger. Ask older relatives to do the same.

3. Consider music lessons for your child— piano or another instrument— at an early age. A good age to start piano lessons is second grade, but some children may be ready earlier.

4. Visit the library or video store and check out musicals to enjoy with your children. “The Sound of Music,” “The King and I,” “Annie,” “Peter Pan,” “Oliver!”, and “The Music Man” are great examples!

5. Set-up a creative corner in your home for drawing, painting, making cards, etc. Include a CD or tape player along with a supply of music to allow for listening while creating.

6. Encourage your children to create their own puppet shows or plays, and have them perform their show for you, grandparents, or neighbors.

7. Purchase a variety of inexpensive percussion instruments and encourage experimentation! They could also create instruments from recycled items. Try putting together your own family STOMP group!

8. Look into enrolling your child in a community ballet, tap, or jazz dance class, or get involved in a community choir program for children.

9. Encourage your child to participate in extracurricular activities at school, such as chorus, drama club, art club, etc.

10. At gift-giving times, encourage your child to make cards and gifts for friends and family.