Parenting Creative Kids

I had every intention of posting day three of 1 pound of clay but……

 Mural at C2C

I think I have mentioned this before that every morning, I begin my day with coffee, breakfast, and my computer.    Robert Genn, a painter in Canada writes a bi-weekly newsletter.  I have to share what I woke up today.

Robert Genn is wrestling with cancer.  I think this horrible disease touches all of us.  I can name four people in our family who have had it, died from it, currently wrestling with it , or are in remission.   Today’s newsletter  opens commenting that we are all amateurs in the art of parenting.  By the time we become pros, it is too late.  The job is done.  I love his thoughts on ideas about parenting creative kids.

Robert writes:

“Show is always better than tell.
Your kids already know your opinions.
Kiss them regularly if they’ll let you.
Be alert when they approach you with ideas.
Encourage them to colour outside the lines.
Keep in touch. Let them know where you are.
Let you and your spouse be sails, not anchors.
Field trips are more valuable than classrooms.
One of the best things you can say is “try it.”
Non-judgmental curiosity beats seasoned guidance.
When kids hang out in the studio, you pick up tips.
Let the kids visit with weird friends and relatives.
The development of imagination requires their privacy.
Always have materials available. Try not to be stingy.
Encourage enterprise. Let them make and sell lemonade.
They understand if you travel during the drum-set stage.
A kid’s opening sentences are not always topic sentences.
If they don’t know what you think, they are likely to ask.
From time to time be dull and stupid. The kids will rally.
Before making suggestions, give it some thought. They have.”

“Last summer, a man I had never seen before knocked on my studio door. With a sly smile he told me he had nine of my daughter Sara’s early paintings. It seems that years ago he had been walking by and purchased them directly from her. She was creating and selling them at a small table out on our lawn. At the age of six, Sara’s works were 25 cents each, or nine for $2.”

Robert wrote this newsletter in 2002.  He talks about his daughter in New York City participating in the NYC “The Big Egg Hunt”.  A son who is a producer.  A second son who is a musician.  Each of these children continue to be creative while supporting their dad, emotionally and with their time, while he completes his chemo treatments.   With regard to creative children, I have three creative children.  All very different.  I love watching my youngest find new ways to express her creativity.  I do wish I had had Robert’s wisdom in her earlier years.  But, I tried.

PS:  The image at the top is my daughter’s mural  in process on the back of our gallery, 2013, and  a journal entry from 2014.

Camille's Journal