New research reveals creativity in children has seriously declined in the last 30 years
A leading academic report released today shows that creativity in children has seriously declined in the last 30 years, meaning they might lack essential social and interactive skills necessary for success in later life, veering Britain towards a creativity crisis.
The report, commissioned by Mini Babybel and led by Professor John Davis, a leading expert in Childhood studies, attributes the decline in creativity to contemporary social and educational changes which have changed the way children are now brought up and educated. Children’s playtime, deemed necessary for the development of creativity, has decreased dramatically since the 1980s, with further research showing only 54% of children ever play outdoors, meaning children are no longer inclined or encouraged to use their imagination.
The expert predictions come alongside research that highlights 69% of British parents think creativity is vital for their children’s development, yet almost half were unsure of what to do to encourage creativity.
The report found parents are an essential tool for encouraging the development of creativity in their own children, through ‘open-ended questioning’, ‘collaborative enquiry’ and ‘possibility thinking’. Yet research revealed 1 in 5 parents admit to leaving school teachers and play groups the task of stimulating creativity in their children, despite the need for their own personal support.
Despite a third of mums and dads worrying their children aren’t spending enough time being creative, 1 in 7 parents spend less than an hour a week solely dedicated to their children’s creativity needs. Knowing how to encourage creativity is a parenting skill that 1 in 3 parents would like to improve upon, especially as 48% of parents noticed a marked improvement in their children’s behaviour when they set them creative tasks.
In response to these findings, Mini Babybel has launched a campaign encouraging families to get creative. Fronted by celebrity dad Jeff Brazier, the campaign is set to raise awareness of the importance of creativity in a child’s development, highlighting ways parents can actively encourage creativity in order to help the next generation be successful.
To help parents encourage their kids to be more creative, Professor John Davis has suggested a list of 15 things parents can do with their children, designed with creativity in mind. The list can be found at www.babybel.co.uk.
Listen to the Parenting Podcast with Jeff Brazier