A friend’s mother once told me if a child is active in their fantasy world, he or she is more creative than other kids. And after years of research, Dr Louise Bunce of Oxford Brookes University proves this right.
During the annual conference of the British Psychological Society’s Developmental Psychology Section in Belfast on Thursday 15, September 2016, Dr Louise Bunce said,” A growing body of research is investigating the influence of children engaging in fantasy on their development. We wanted to test whether children who engage in fantasy play are more creative. This is because, theoretically, playing in make-believe worlds requires imagination to conceive of the world differently to its current reality, which is also necessary to think creatively.”
During their data collection, it was obvious that children with higher levels of fantastical play had a higher sense of creativity!
“The results provide evidence that engaging in play that involves imagining increasingly unrealistic scenarios is associated with thinking more creatively, although at the moment we don’t know the direction of this relationship. It is possible that children who enjoy fantasy play are subsequently more creative, and it’s equally possible that children who are more creative subsequently engage in more fantasy play.”
Dr Louise also encourages parents and teachers to allow their children to engage themselves in fantasy play as a way to develop their creative thinking skills. It just might come in handy when they are stuck in a sticky situation, don’t you think so?