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Wednesday, August 22, 2012

How crafts help our kids develop

Many busy parents miss a perfect opportunity to help their kids develop spatially, dextrously confidently and socially by neglecting a simple pastime: crafts. It’s difficult to get older kids to start craft-making from scratch, so the time to nurture a likeness for this useful element of child development is when they’re very little. Making crafts will help kids develop in several different ways. At the same time, they’re a perfect bridge-building for parents to spend quality time with their kids, and talk to them in a relaxed environment, doing something they enjoy. Here are some basic ways crafts help our kids develop.

Crafts help our kids build confidence
Kids love it when they can teach something to someone else (or at least help them do it). This makes them feel like a valued member of the family, class, or play group. In addition to this, a child who knows how to do one thing or several things well is a child who will not be fazed by challenges set for him or her at school. This child has a proven track record of being able to learn something and practice it to a point at which they can do it properly. This is a child who’s already worked out ‘how to learn’. This is a skill every university lecturer will tell you is lacking in a lot of their students. Why wait until it’s too late to teach your kids how to learn. Give them the head-start - that advantage over the majority of his/her class. Remember this particular skill is not about learning. It’s about learning how to learn – the process whereby we can grasp a simple concept of how something behaves, how it works, how to work it, or how to make it.

Doing crafts with children helps us find their talents

Let’s face it, we don’t really know what talents our kids have when they’re still finding their feet. We have to find these natural skills and nurture them. What better way of doing this than to involve your kids with various crafts and watch how well they fare and how their dexterity and awareness build up. Finding talents early is best because this gives us time to nurture them before kids become distracted by the big, interesting world in which they live. If talents are identified early enough kids can fall in love with them for themselves, and mature into their skill as a part of who they are.

Craft-making helps kids build additional skills

One craft builds the skill to do another. For example, from an early age, it’s the colouring that builds muscles and dexterity in the hands to get our children ready for writing. Kids who do not colour when they’re toddlers will take longer to develop handwriting, and will find it difficult to master the fine dexterity required for more advanced skills like playing the piano or building intricate Lego designs etc.
Painting garden pots and puttering outside develops a talent for spotting colour and an early appreciation of nature. This can nurture children’s awareness of the world in which we live. It can also produce kids who have high aptitude in science and the social aspect of how we interact with our world and nature.

What other ways can crafts help our kids develop? Please share your ideas in the comments. This post comes to you with the compliments of www.opendoorloan.co.uk

Anne Lyken-Garner is the author of, ‘How To Raise Kids To Be Responsible Adults’ and blogs about confidence building at ‘How To Build Confidence’


  1. Thanks for publishing this. The photos are very fitting.

  2. The photos fit perfectly. Great article and illustrations!!




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