Creative mums promoting creative play!
I am a Mum of two creative kids and a Community Development Social Worker who runs a community sustainability project and a community orchard. I am also a Community Play and Art Facilitator who has taught many workshops on lots of things to do with creativity and play, especially how to foster creativity with children.
As a child I had always valued art and creating things. Our wonderful Mum encouraged our creative freedom. We were allowed to paint murals on our bedroom walls (even graffiti at one point to the shock of one friends parent), to get dirty making mud pies in our garden and to develop our interests at our own pace with Mum and Dads full support. My childhood is filled with memories of slow days that felt like they lasted forever filled with fun and creative play that could take us anywhere depending on where we wanted our imaginations to go.
When I had my own children my interest in play and creativity was revitalized. I wanted my kids to have what I had. I wanted them to be in a freely creative and supportive environment where they could explore, experiment, take risks and engage with their imaginations just as I had been able to do. This led me to Playcentre, that wonderful, unique to New Zealand early childhood parent-led collective that believes that children learn best through play. The central philosophies of Playcentre are that parents are their children’s best first teacher and that creativity is something to be nurtured and valued. I was a Playcentre kid too and for us it was the best decision that our little family ever made.
Playcentre promotes open ended, child-led play. I jumped into the adult education workshops and then facilitated about a million of them myself such as Learning Though Play, Effective Sessions, Creativity and Play Workshops like Collage and Junk, Paint, Playdough and Messy play. I learnt a lot as I went on and I made them my own a little bit too, combining in my growing interest with environmental sustainability and discussions around conscious consumption and gender. I then started doing creativity workshops and open ended play events out in the big wide world in community halls, parks and schools. I am utterly convinced that creativity and play are vital to a happy sustainable future for our kids and the world (Neuro-scientists and child development experts would agree but more of that later).
Once my kids started school it became even more vital to provide chances for my kids to be creative and play freely. The Creative Kids Collective is about sharing a little bit of that journey as well as our community endeavours alongside providing workshops for adults on all things creative and play….Looking for the essentials for a good mud pie kitchen, the recipe for a dough that can be painted, the perfect morning provocation to guide curious kids to the table to draw or make instead of turning on the TV or a discussion on why open ended loose parts play can save the world then look no further.
Nurturing kids creative souls is what we are all about and you are welcome to come on that journey with us!