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Now that we’ve welcomed the New Year with open minds, we’re ready to tackle our goals one at a time. Like adults, children set goals for themselves that they wish to accomplish as well.

As parents and adults, it’s our job to help children see the potential that lives inside of them. What better way to help our children than by allowing them to be creative with their goals?

A study done at Duke University Medical Center showed that creativity helps children be more confident, learn faster, and helps them develop social skills at a quicker pace. Funny enough, using your creative imagination helps children cope with struggles and pain, too!

As parents, we all know that our children’s mind is filled with bucketloads of creativity just waiting to be poured out. How can we help our children accomplish their goals this year by using their creative skills? Check out the three examples below to get a headstart on your child’s goals this year.

Creative Hour

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With how our busy schedules are day and night, it can be hard to find the time to sit down and review our goals, let alone our children’s. This year, try coming up with a set schedule that allows you and your child to take an hour away from your day to practice creativity.

During this hour you and your child can paint, come up with short stories, or play a make believe game. Anything that harvests your child’s creativity will work perfectly. Creative Minds have found that “Creativity fades away when we do not use it. One of the biggest culprits here is the simple pattern of human habit.”.

Read Every Night

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Books allow us to take flight into a whole new world. We get attached to characters, fight off the bad guys, and save the town. If this is how we as parents feel as we read books, imagine how our children must feel.

Allow your child to pick out a book they wish to read before bed each night. While you’re reading, let them tell you what they would have done differently. Allow them to take over the story and put it into their own words. Studies show that when you allow your child to play make believe, it prepares them for the real world. This storytelling ability is a great transferable skill for making video games, design and creating new worlds in Minecraft!

Play With Playdough and other Toys

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Allowing our children to play and mold things with their hands helps their creative juices flow. What might look like a giant blob to you looks like a kitten in a tree to them. Your child will not only be thinking of ways to tell what’s on their mind, but will also be acting it out in front of you. There are also many new toys on the shelf that kids can design and invent with like Dash and Dot, Lego and blocks.

Let your children be the expert when it comes to goal making. They know more than you do about what they wish to accomplish. Playing will help our children get that much closer to their goals and they’ll have fun while accomplishing them!

Sign your child up for a STEM after school program or camp to really give them a creative boost in 2017!