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Monday, August 6, 2007

Games and Activities to Ignite the Creative Spark in your child!

Would you like your child to be more creative. Would you like him/her to stop hogging the pc/phone/x-box etc and start taking an interest in other stuff too. Try out some of these fun games and activities. You get to spent quality time with your children and lots of laughs too.

Treasure Hunt
This game is fabulous to play during Children Birthday Parties (or whenever there are enough kids to form a few groups). Instead of making the same old list of items, add some twist.
For eg. 1) a circular gold object less than 5 cm (although the "correct" object is a $1 coin, some children will get creative and will give a gold ring/bracelet )
2) a rattle in the shape of a bottle - this is where the children's thinking skill is harnessed to solve - where the child gets an empty bottle and puts in beads or coins to make it into a rattle
3) include some slider puzzle or cross word that has to be solved

Creative Story Telling - (Can be used for Brainstorming of short stories)
Nominate 1 child to solve a puzzle. There is a Crime. Who did it, who was involved and where did it take place. He or she can ask 30 questions and only Yes or No answers will be given.
The rest of the group is given a set of rule.
* When the question ends with a vowel , Yes
* When the question ends with R,L,T , then Yes
* Plural , then NO
* After 3 Yeses then a NO
For eg. the child ask - was it a murder (Ends with a R, so Yes)
- Is the murderer a man (Ends with a N, so No)
(however if the question was - Is the murderer a male , ends with
a vowel so Yes)
-After 3 Yes, then the answer will be a No (even if it ends with a vowel or R/L/T etc)
At the end of the 30 questions the child will come up with her own story. - There was a kidnapping, and the victim was a girl, a man used his shopping bag in the shopping centre and dragged the girl away......
So just keep changing the rules and have lots of fun and laughs!!

Yummy Cookies
* Prepare some plain cookie dough, then let your children add
flavourings, fruits, nuts and coloring as per their likes and
taste. This is how I came up with My "Chocolate Nut Surprise" -
Thanks to my kids!
* Let them use various cookie cutters and shape them into different shapes.
* Create some Ginger Bread man and let your kids decorate.(Raisins for eyes, M&M for smiles etc)

Create Specialized Paper for making creative Greeting cards, Scrap booking, gift wrapping etc. See my other Blog - Easy Crafts

Chain Story
You can start off simply with "Once upon a time" - or for a more dramatic twist try "It was a dark and stormy night". Each person playing the game contributes a link to the tale in process. If younger children are playing, you could adapt the plot from their favorite story. Older kids might enjoy finishing incomplete sentences, like " It was a dark and stormy night, suddenly a flying saucer ......"

How does your child go about solving problems? Design some "Brain Teasers" to provide fun and help develop your child's problem solving skills.
First, try some "free form" creative problem solving. Ask your child how would she get out of a locked room where the knob is reachable but the key is on a peg much too high to reach. Some might say " Stand on the chair" or "Call mom to get me out" etc.
Next make it more challenging. Tell your child that the room is empty except for the following: a yardstick, some string and some paperclips. How can these items be used to fetch the key? ( He could make a fishing pole using the paperclip as a hook to pull the key off the peg)
Try making up some puzzlers of your own. Do keep them simple and be prepared for many right answers!

New uses for an old object.
Point to an object in the room and ask what's it used for. In the kitchen, point to a spatula, for eg. After she gives the conventional usage, ask her what else could she do with it? Answers may vary according to your child's age. Some might say " Dig a whole with it" while others may say " Use it as a racket " etc... Try with other kitchen implements - spoons, forks, whisk etc. Every room as it own potential gold mine!

Crazy Olympics
As the name suggests, the object of the game is to come up with silly and fun games and sports, such as hopping on one foot across the room; Walking backwards while flapping your arms like a duck; crawling on all fours ...and many other feats of silliness! Encourage your child to dream up games of his own, or combine activities like hopping, singing and carrying a ball on a spoon etc.

Clip interesting or amusing photos from the newspaper or magazine - then pass them along to your kids. Their job: write new captions to the now caption less images. After the game is through, you might want to bind the images and their new text descriptions into a notebook or album. ( If your child comes up with any hilarious captions, do feel free to sent them to me.)

Poetry Game
The wonderful thing about this game is that you don't have to be good at poetry or even like poetry - its played purely for fun.
Each player is given a pen and piece of paper upon which they write 2 lines of poetry which do not have to rhyme, but should scan and have the same rhythm.
Papers are then folded to hide the first line and passed to the next player, who reads the second line and writes 2 more. The third line should rhyme with the second line but it is not necessary for the fourth to do so.
The game continues with each player having a turn to see the last line and writing 2 more lines of the poem passed on to them. Then all the poems are read out to much laughter!

Change the word
The aim of the game is to alter one word to become another by only altering one letter at a time in the least number of steps.
For beginners and young children, begin with DOG and change it to CAT.
For a more challenging puzzle or for older children you could use a six or seven lettered word.

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