by Carol Fertig
What is creativity and how should it be measured? Is it an important trait to possess?
For many years, the Torrance Tests of Creative Thinking have been used to measure individuals’ divergent thinking. The tests are sometimes used to gain entrance to gifted programs. But is it enough to be deemed creative, or is creativity only a valuable trait if one can put that ability to use to make and produce new and practical products and ideas?
A Box? Or a Spaceship? What Makes Kids Creative appeared in The Wall Street Journal in December of 2010. In the article, parents are given suggestions about how to help their children be creative. Some of the suggestions include
- Tolerate “wrong” answers as children explore and fantasize.
- Sign children up for programs that foster creativity, such as Destination ImagiNation, Odyssey of the Mind, and Future Problem-Solving Program International.
- Invite children to come up with possible solutions for everyday problems, and listen to their ideas with respect.
- Ask open-ended questions and show interest in answers.
- Refrain from judging kids' ideas, even if they seem crazy or naive.
- Avoid paying too much attention to the outcome of kids' creative efforts. (You want them to be creative for the pure pleasure of it, not because they will receive praise.)
For numerous ideas about helping kids be creative, click on the Search Entries button in the upper right corner of this blog. Enter the Keyword “creativity,” and click on Search. This will bring up all previous blog posts on creativity.
This blog post initially appeared on the Gifted Child Info Blog on January 21, 2011.