Can creativity be learned or is it an inborn talent?

By Ekta Bajaj

There are many definitions of creativity given by leading psychologists but in simpler terms “Creativity is an act of bringing alive an indigenous and intrinsic idea.” The next question arises, “Can creativity be learned or is it an inborn talent?”
Many studies have suggested that all human beings have a natural tendency to be creative. However, unfortunately, this tendency diminishes as we grow. Outer influences and inner doubts cover the ideas that are born inside our mind. I, therefore, believe that creativity cannot be learned but it can definitely be revived and resurrected in our brain. The sooner it’s done, the better it is as there are fewer layers to uncover. The truth is the way we raise our little ones plays an important part in nurturing creativity and parents, therefore, play an important role in reminding their children of simple ways to tap into their power to create.

Rainbow for rainbow…
We can foster creativity in children by simple behaviors such as asking open-ended questions. Children are naturally inquisitive with numerous questions arising in their mind every day.  Instead of giving straightforward answers, ask them a counter question. For instance, if a child asks you, “Why do we see the rainbow only on certain days?” You could give a brief answer or you could ask, “When do you see rainbows?” or “Where does it come from?” You will be astounded to see how creatively they engage their little mind to answer those questions.

Do you play devil or angel?
As parents, it natural for us to sometimes get irritated with our child’s seemingly different way of coming up with a solution. Accept their unusual ideas and provide them a stimulating environment to think freely. Encourage them to explore all the possibilities from most popular one to the unique one. Give children the opportunity to express. Let them disagree with you. Encourage them to find more than one route to a solution, and more than one solution to a problem. When they successfully solve a problem, ask them to solve it again but to find a new way to do it. Read them a traditional tale and then ask them to re write or retell the same story as they would want to.

Learning to learn
It is important to learn from everything we see around us and this learning I believe can be extended creatively to life as well. Take your child for a walk in the woods, excite their mind by showing them the intrinsic details in flowers or encourage them to imagine characters in clouds. The idea is to try bringing fun in every little thing. Sometimes the smallest simple moments can bring the most profound solution to a problem. In my opinion, creativity is not just about expressing through words or paints, it’s an art that will encourage a child to find alternative solutions in everyday situations. They will connect with a problem on a challenge level and be ready to trigger their mind to come up with a unique solution.

At Author In Me, we believe that we are on a very delicate task of gradually dusting away the layers of self-doubt from a child’ mind to unleash the shine of their inner diamond. Every child is taken on a unique journey of self-discovery through our courses and the fact that they are guided by published authors gives them the confidence to ask the most basic questions.

Right from an idea conception to idea development and lastly to getting a published book, the child understands that the idea that was seeded within their mind has its own special place in the literacy world. That in true terms means unleashing the power of creativity.

About the author – Ekta Bajaj

Ekta is the co-founder of ‘Author In Me’, a company that specialises in conducting creative, vocabulary and emotional intelligence course for 7-12 years old. Ekta has co-authored numerous education resource material for Author In Me and is actively involved in conceptualising, structuring and conducting the A-I-M courses.