The Global Cardboard Challenge

Caine’s Arcade is an absolute touching story. What pulls my heartstrings the most is the proud look on Caine’s face and his sweet toothless smile!  There’s NOTHING like the look of pure joy on a child’s face when they’ve accomplished something they’re proud of.

What’s more is that this story and the response to it inspired The Imagination Foundation. “The Imagination Foundation’s mission is to find, foster, and fund creativity and entrepreneurship in kids like Caine.”

Today is actually the Global Cardboard Challenge where people around the world are hosting events for kids to create using just cardboard and their imaginations. Anyone anywhere can play. “The idea is just to bring the whole world together to play and celebrate creativity and imagination.”

What a beautiful story and important project. Love that Nirvan Mullick, the filmmaker behind Caine’s Arcade, says “this all started with going to buy a door handle” but ended up buying a funpass! He not only found joy in discovering Caine’s arcade but did something to celebrate it. Then did something even bigger with the attention his short film received by keeping the creative momentum going and starting the Imagination Foundation.  Goes to show that when you believe in something and put your heart into it, amazing things happen. I’m inspired… again.

Makedo Project 1

The possibilities are really endless with these cardboard connectors! It was also the perfect activity to take to the cottage since there always seem to be boxes around and they come in a small cylinder container making it very easy to transport.

V is still too young to cut the boxes and actually poke the holes for the connectors but she directed the entire process! Surprise surprise!  It started as a zamboni… the amount of snow outside inspired that idea!

But then evolved into a fire truck.. inspired by the flame in the wood stove…

… then a sleigh…

Very very fun! What’s really cool about these very simple (I don’t even know what to call them…) doo dads is that it’s open ended and creates the opportunity for A LOT of play. It starts with the planning and gathering materials, then there’s building and problem solving and finally playing, playing and more playing. At which point it all starts all over again with decorating, adapting and playing in different ways.

The Joy of Books

There’s nothing quite like a real book.

There really isn’t.

Just when I was seriously considering an E-reader…

Holiday Craft Exchange and Playdate

This is truly a brilliant idea. I can’t take credit but I’ve enjoyed participating in a holiday craft exchange for the second year in a row now.  Here’s what it is: a playdate where each Mom brings a simple holiday craft packaged and ready for as many kids that will be at the party. Ten seems to be a good number. Have some fun playing, have each mom explain what they brought and any special directions for the craft.. but the best part is going home with 10 different crafts that you can pull out on a snowy day. The result? Some fun and creativity with minimal effort in coming up with the craft AND instant gifts your child can give to a grandparent or relative that is uniquely made by your child.

And the proud result…

Games of the Early 1800s

“Play is the only way the highest intelligence of humankind can unfold.” Joseph Chilton Pearce

It’s fun to think about what types of games kids played a hundred and even two hundred years ago… A couple of weekends ago we enjoyed an afternoon out at our Historical Society’s Harvest Festival at Lakeside Park. It was the perfect crisp fall day for hot apple cider, baked goods, peaking into the historical Thomas House, a Pioneer home of the 1830s – 1840s, and best of all (as far as Violet was concerned) trying out games of the era.

The ‘hoop toss’ game, as I’ll call it (not sure of it’s official name), kept Violet occupied for quite some time. This is certainly going on my project list for cottage games to make.

We were also introduced to a ‘leisure activity’ called The Game of Graces in which each person gets two dowel rods and throw a wooden hoop between the players. I learned from Wikipedia that the “winner is the player who catches the hoop ten times first”.

Nana and Violet gave it a try!

Now, this is a game meant for older children and ladies, however Violet did alright with some directive throwing from Nana! The history of the game is interesting:

The Game of Graces was considered a proper game benefiting young ladies, and supposedly, tailored to make them more graceful. Graces was hardly ever played by boys, and ever played by two boys at the same time, either two girls, or a boy and a girl.

Eye Spy…

Have you ever wondered what to do with all of the stuff in your junk drawer? How about scrap toys or that bin of little odds and ends or toys that don’t really belong anywhere? This collage found at the Alaska State Museum turns the mundane everyday little objects into a really interesting collection of treasures. Found in the Children’s Room of the museum the framed object art is accompanied by cards that encourage child interaction from an Eye Spy activity to challenging you to make up a rhyme that incorporates the objects found in the collage. What a great idea!

Let’s get creative shall we?

Finger paintingThis blog has been in the making in my mind for the last 2 years.  I have an overwhelming desire to explore creativity. What inspires creativity?  How can we nurture and inspire creativity in our children?  Creativity both in the arts sense as well as in the critical thinking sense. Nurturing creativity is an area that I’ve seen explored, as I hope to capture here through my research, but one that I think still has the potential to be delved deeper into. What can we, as parents, do to keep creativity alive in our kids? The answer to that question is what I hope this blog achieves!

Please join me on this journey of discovering creativity in our kids and let’s not forget ourselves in the process!