Guest post! 10 commandments for parenting creativity

Today's post is hopefully the first of many guest posts on the blog.  I love sharing the love and getting other people's ideas into the mix. Please read Ben's 10 commandments for parenting creativity.

1) Use exciting materials If your children are fed up potato printing vaguely recognisable triangles, try buying them some water-based spray paints- they’ll love it. Banksy managed to spray paint his name on the side of an elephant. Probably not a safe or ethical idea, instead maybe challenge your kid to spray paint their name on the neighbour's cat!? Or a local politician you don’t really like. Or just a canvas if you want to be boring.

 2) Let them see you do it If children grow up seeing you at least trying to be creative then they are more likely to have a pop. Don't think you're creative? Trying getting into your underwear, bathing in paint and then dancing energetically to the Prodigy. Anyone can do that, and you can convince them it's art. Obviously don't do this if you care about your house.

3) Teach growth mindset Teach them that they don't have to be the love child of Picasso and Adele to be creative. It's partly about intrinsic ability but it's more having determination to learn and practise. I reckon.

 4) Make them comfortable with failure "There is no innovation and creativity without failure. Period." -Brene Brown
What she said.

5) Praise the process not the piece Don't go 'Wow you're a genius!' every time they've drawn a squiggle. Instead praise the process, i.e 'Good effort!' or 'I love your creativity!'. That kind of thing.

 6) Reduce the options Limitations are the best setting for creativity. Options can be crippling. So choose some limitations for them. A self portrait only using spaghetti for example.

7) Make it fun Fill water balloons with paint and throw them at an outside wall and at any police officers that ask you what you're doing.

 8) Inspire them Take them to places and experiences that might inspire them. Gigs, festivals, events. Maybe avoid the burning man festival til they're a bit older. Just to avoid nightmares and stuff.

 9) Hang your friends' art* Hanging up your friends' art around the house helps them value creativity and it's extra inspiring for them to link it to people they know. *Unless it's erotic painting

10) Introduce them to great music. I’m not saying I have anything against Old McDonald and his animal rich farm. But if I have to listen to it 75 times in a row again, I might end up ramming my ears full of play dough and losing a fairly decent chunk of my sanity. I’ve now created 4 separate playlists for my kids, of music that I want to introduce to them, which is a clever way of sounding like a thoughtful parent when really I’m just listening to music that I like. Win. Thanks for reading! Ben @the_minimalist_parent


  1. Aww, this was sweet and funny and insightful all at once! I’m a big fan of the growth mindset (and spray painting cats 😆)


Post a Comment

Popular posts from this blog

Breastfeeding. The Mummy Blog GUEST POST

Things to do before 35

Am I selfish??