How can I encourage my child’s natural creativity without making a mess?

No matter how much we celebrate creative play here at Oglee Poglee, we know there are days when you just don’t want the kids to make a mess! What if we told you there are ways you can boost creative thinking and encourage their imagination without having to clear up afterwards? Here are our favourite no-mess ways to encourage creativity:

Use your bodies

One of the most incredible creative tools we have available at all times is: our body! Challenge your kids to move in new ways and get their creative skills going. What poses can they strike? What funny walks can they do? You could also pop on some music and have a kitchen disco! Dancing is a brilliant and mess-free way to boost creative thinking.

Encourage your children to think differently

Our creative skills grow when we are challenged to use new neural pathways in our brains and literally think in new ways. Any time we can encourage our children to think differently we are strengthening their creativity for life. The best way we can do this is to chat with our children. Be curious together, explore and investigate things together. Ask each other questions and imagine together. What does your child see? What do they think will happen next? What would they have done differently? You can apply these sorts of questions to every aspect of life, from watching a film to reading a story, cooking dinner together or watching a butterfly in a park.

Get creative outdoors

If you don’t want mess inside the house, take it outdoors. Take your paints on to the lawn or set up a water game on the patio; there’s no need to keep creative activities to the kitchen table.

Make the most of screen time

There’s no escaping the importance of tech in our day-to-day lives, and technology is only going to become more and more important to our kids’ futures. The good news is, screen time can be used to boost creative thinking too! While letting little hands get physical through crafts and active fun is preferred, the use of creative apps and creative TV shows have their place too.

Get a camera out

When it comes to tech use, photography is another fantastic way to sharpen their artistic eye without making a mess! Hand over your smartphone or invest in a simple digital camera they can point and shoot with. Let them have free rein and take photos of the things they find interesting and beautiful or give them prompts to complete a scavenger hunt (ie, 5 soft things, 5 circles… etc).

Champion imaginary play

If your keen to help your children become creative adults, don’t underestimate the importance of letting our kids be kids and play until their hearts are content. Plenty of imaginary play is key to creative thinking – and you don’t need to set anything up either! Let your children enjoy hours of free play where they take the lead and allow their creative juices to flow through imaginary scenarios and conversations.

Have a day out

Exposing our children to all sorts of different experiences is another way to boost creativity. We love going out for a family day out and seeing new things together. For ideas on places to go, read our blog ‘10 Attractions to Engage Their Imagination’.

Come to an Oglee Poglee workshop!

We know how hard it can be to find the motivation to set up creative opportunities for your children when you have to tidy up after. Come along to one of our kids creative workshops and you don’t have to deal with any of the mess! Your children will have the opportunity to immerse themselves in all sorts of creative activities based on our theme, while you watch on in wonder as you see their creativity unleashed. The smiles are priceless. Find out more about our workshops here.

If you like this blog you may also like our article ‘8 Ways to Unleash Your Child’s Creativity Beside Crafts’ for more fun ideas.

Creative Heroes Club: Mission Two

Following the success of our launch event, Creative Heroes Club: Mission Two took place on Saturday 2nd February.  Once again the families did themselves proud and worked together to solve what was, quite a tricky challenge.

Oglee Pip had continued his adventure, left the strange planet with the help of a rocket booster back pack (created in Mission One).  But like most of Pip’s adventures all did not go to plan and after being sucked into a black hole he awoke to find himself tiny and stuck.  Trapped in a glass jar on a table laid with food.

So what would  you do in this situation? Time for a bit of a think……….

  • Has Pip shrunk or has the world around him got bigger?
  • Who has trapped him in the jar, are they friendly?
  • What advantages are there to being really small?
  • How can Pip escape form the glass jar?
  • What might make Pip’s time in the jar more comfortable?

The great thing about Creative Heroes Club is that there is no right or wrong answer to any of these questions.  The children can decide what is important to them and how they want to help Pip.  Then with their family for support and a huge array of tools and materials to experiment with, they can turn their ideas into a reality.

Escape

For Charlie it was crucial that Pip escaped and so he invented a super ladder so Pip could climb out of the jar.  This ladder was cooler than most because it also had a slide and a trampoline that propelled you out of danger and onto your next adventure.

Jacob and his mum felt a spot of magic was required and made a very well crafted silver wand for Pip to use.   Luca also believed in a spot of magic and that this challenge needed unicorn power.  His colourful unicorn brought Pip a silver ladder and then together they flew away to safety.

Eve designed a working grapple hook using straws, a tube and string!  I was so impressed.  A quick flick of the wrist and out shot the hook and a long length of rope for Pip to climb up.  A genius idea.

Bjarni was intrigued by the black hole that had got Pip into this tricky situation and decided to use it as an escape plan.  His invention harnessed the heat from some Birthday candles to blow up a balloon.  Once over inflated the balloon would burst with such ferocity that it would create a new black hole into which everything would be sucked including Pip.

Comfort

Martha focused on making Pip’s current situation more comfortable by carefully making a miniature bed and tin foil cutlery.  Gracie-Mae also wanted Pip to be happy and created a very detailed little living space for him complete with bed, fish tank and umbrella.

Danger

Finn  explored the possibility that someone had put Pip in the jar.  He drew around his sister and then painstakingly cut out a cardboard person and added them to the kitchen set up.  A blindfold was added and clever Finn had created the perfect opportunity for Pip.  Pip could escape and his captor would be none the wiser!

A Small Problem

Genevieve and her cousin were a great team and together invented the “Re -Growinator”, which as its name suggests was to help Pip grow bigger.  Georgiana also wanted to help Pip grow and her colourful stilts were perfect for the job.  Bree and Freya’s bouncy shoes were another inspired idea.

As usual Pip was spoilt for choice with all the amazing inventions.  This is only a few of the cool things that were made during that wonderful afternoon.

Each and every thing the children create then goes onto inspire Pips next adventure.  Mission Three is currently being planned and I can’t wait.  Book your family place to experience the magic for yourselves.

So what did I learn from Mission Two of Creative Heroes Club……

  • That my job really is the best job in the world
  • Never underestimate children. They have ideas buzzing around their heads that an adult could only dream about.
  • Balloons are lots of fun!  Adding different materials to your inventing can spark new ideas.
  • Imagination and make believe is not just for little kids, adults love it too.
  • Spending time as a family playing together, listening and exploring new things really is precious.

Click here for more information on Creative Heroes Club and how your family can take part

 

 

Creative Heroes Club: The Launch

On Saturday 17th November we launched the first ever Creative Heroes Club in Berkhamsted, Hertfordshire and it was epic!   A huge thank you to all the families who came and spent the afternoon designing, creating and inventing with us.   With the kids leading the way and no restrictions to limit their imaginations it was an amazing afternoon of pure creativity and make believe.

Mission One was entitled “Planet Create” and told the story of Oglee Pip’s fateful trip into space to visit his friends.  After a collision with a meteorite Pip is stranded on a strange planet and needs help making a new home.  Clipboards at the ready and armed with a few starter ideas our team of Creative Heroes set about designing just what Oglee Pip needed………..

Genevieve focused on communications and felt that Pip would need to speak to his friends.  She made a very snazzy, loud speaker so that Pip could shout into space.  Her brother Henry made a three headed dog to keep Pip company.

Jude knew that life on a planet would be boring and so created Pip a very cool ball game out of newspaper complete with scoring board.  Big sister Eve and her mum made a full size den for Pip to shelter in, including shelves, a fire and a seat.  Eve also created a very life like set of ear phones for Pip that linked to his own Iphone so that he could listen to music.

Riley was quick of the mark and knowing that Pip needed cheering up instantly made him a bottle of cherry squash followed by a jet pack and a hot dog.  Little sister Ella made sure Pip was comfortable with a long scarf.

Bjarni put his inventing skills to the test and designed a working water well and a box that harnessed the power of lightening.  Once Pip had water and electricity more inventions followed and a flat screen, wall mounted TV was quickly installed complete with remote!

George, Felix and mum created Blooby, a very cute robot friend for Pip.  I have to say Blooby might be the most lovely robot I have ever met.

The creativity in the room was electric and it was amazing to watch each family work together.  Listening to each other ideas, making suggesting and trying new things.  No idea was too crazy and nothing was off limits…..rocket ships, chairs, houses, pet dragons and a whole new language; Pip was spoilt for choice with all the amazing inventions.

So what will happen to Pip?   With the Creative Heroes help he now has options.  Will he stay on the strange planet, live in his amazing den, drive his snazzy car and watch his cool tv with his three headed dog or will he use the rocket booster (with anti sun button!) megaphone and telescope to work out a way to get back to Earth?

Find out at the next Creative Heroes Club in January.  Knowing Pip,  I can imagine he will need our help again!

Click here for more information on Creative Heroes Club and how your family can take part

 

We Won! Best Children’s Business in Hertfordshire

We are thrilled to announce that Oglee Poglee won “Best Children’s Business” in the 2018 Muddy Stilettos Awards.  Thank you so much to everyone that votes for us, it really does mean a lot.

What a weekend to win on!  There was a royal wedding and a 70th Birthday celebration for my mum so I was surrounded by friends, family and Champagne most of the weekend which made in extra special.

In true winners style I would like to thank a few people who without their support Oglee Poglee would just not work.  Mainly my husband and children who put up with cardboard everywhere, sequins stuck to their socks and long nights in front of the TV helping me to cut out paper shapes or box up orders.

I also have a fantastic team.  Clare, Helen and Rebecca make all the party bags whilst Jo and Bizi entertain children at our parties.  They are an amazing bunch who bring so much to the company and put up with my creative ramblings and mad moments. I couldn’t do it without you all.

Another big mention is to Rachel for her amazing Pr, everyone at the Design House for their graphic work and our new website, the team at Neal Brothers Packaging who like cardboard as much as me and last but not least Maxine and Saskia who have brought my marketing and web copy into the 20th Century at last.

Thank you for making 2018 an amazing year for Oglee Poglee