Encourage creativity in your child without splurging on toys

Offer your children a range of creative materials, and allow them frequent opportunities and lots of time to experience and explore them.

If you’re looking for ways to spark your child’s creativity, but don’t want to spend money or time buying toys, we have some good news for you! Ordinary household objects may be all that your child needs to inspire and entertain him.

The following ideas may help you encourage creativity in your child:

Set up a fort

Take a large blanket and cover up some chairs. Your child can use this as a “mini house”. She can decide on the various rooms as well as how to decorate them.

Put on some music

Play different kinds of music and ask your child what each song reminds them of, how they feel, and what they think the song is about.

Turn to recyclable items

Collect cardboard rollers, old scraps of material, buttons, cotton, wool, etc., and create an arts and crafts box that your child can dig into on a rainy day. The different sizes and textures will help your child create imaginative objects.

Open a book

Read your child a story and then ask her to draw a picture of what she thinks certain characters look like. Or you could give your child a few pictures (old magazines and newspapers provide a wide variety!) and ask her to tell you a story about the pictures.

Go outside

Let your child spend more time outdoors. Nature offers all the “creative toys” your child needs. They can have fun looking for interesting rocks or stones, picking different shaped leaves, or watching creepy crawlies.


I'm an experienced writer, sub-editor, and media & public relations specialist with a demonstrated history of working in the media industry – across digital, print, TV, and radio. I earned a diploma in Journalism and Print Media from leading institution, Damelin College, with distinctions (Journalism And Print Media, Media Studies, Technical English And Communications, South African Studies, African & International Studies, Technology in Journalism, Journalism II & Practical Journalism). I also hold a qualification in Investigative Journalism from Print Media SA, First Aid Training from St John’s Ambulance, as well as certificates in Learning to Write Marketing Copy, Planning a Career in User Experience, and Writing a Compelling Blog Post.
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