Last updated on Feb 3rd, 2021 at 11:27 am

Life under lockdown has been tough on everyone, especially for parents. Trying to balance work-life and family time has always been a challenge for working parents. But now, with the kids having to learn from home under lockdown, too, things have been extra tough.

Children are struggling too – the normal weekday routines they’re so familiar with are gone and there is limited contact with their classmates and teachers. What’s more, these changes to the structure of their daily life can have a significant impact on their little minds.

Link between creativity and well-being

Multiple studies show creativity and well-being are positively linked. Psychologist Bernice Castle agrees, saying that art and creativity help the development of children in various ways. “Art can be a powerful tool for children and adults alike. If children engage in hands-on art activities, they learn much better in all disciplines.”

Art stimulates fine and gross motor skills

“Art helps children apply their gross and fine motor skills to something meaningful and assists them to tap into their problem-solving skills through visual cognitive responses. It has also been proven to stimulate imagination, improve observation skills, boost self-esteem, provide a sense of accomplishment and reduce stress,” adds Bernice.

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Art helps kids to communicate

“Finally, art creates opportunities for your children to communicate how they see and experience the world and allows them to give expression to their feelings about the situations they encounter in their daily lives,” Bernice concludes.

Getting creative together

The need to keep kids engaged and entertained during the lockdown has left many working parents scratching their heads. Here are some ways you can tap into your kids’ creative outlets and keep them engaged in meaningful ways during these uncertain times:

Set up an art station

Dedicate a small section of your home to art projects. BIC has a wide range of high-quality stationery perfect for art projects with the kids. They’re made to last, and are widely available at your local grocery or stationery shop.

ALSO SEE: 3 fun paper and glue crafts your toddler will love playing with afterwards

Set daily challenges

Give your kids a challenge for the day. This will help them meet daily goals and provide a sense of accomplishment at the end of the day.

Keep everything

Don’t throw anything away. Display the really good art works and keep the rest in storage. Not only are these great keepsakes, but they show kids their work is special and deserves attention.

Find online resources

There are thousands of online resources, from blogs to Youtube tutorials and more. Make use of these resources to add a creative spin to things. Also see the #BICStayInspired tutorials on Facebook.

Get involved

Whether it’s reaching out to other parents you know, searching for ideas online, or asking a teacher, use the resources you have to get involved and stay connected with your child.

More about the expert:

Bernice Castle is a clinical psychologist, family therapist and specialised educationist in private practice in Cape Town. Learn more about Bernice Castle here.