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Faber-Castell brings music to its Creativity Can toy line

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On display at last week’s Sweet Suite 2014 toy trade show in New York was Faber-Castell’s Creativity for Kids brand, which showed six new themed Creativity Cans, including a 100-piece Creativity Can Music entry geared toward aspiring musicians—ages four and up—who can make instruments out of the can contents in producing sounds and beats.

“We’ve found that creativity in and of itself can help to increase test scores and help out in school--and that music does the same thing,” said Faber-Castell product developer Tina Dujmovic. “So it’s the perfect marriage of two creative arts--crafting arts and music.”

Creativity for Kids last year launched the Creativity Comeback program to bring increased awareness to the importance of creativity for a balanced and healthy childhood. Central to it was the big Creativity Can, which contained over 100 craft components including air-dry clay, googly eyes, feathers, pipe cleaners, felt, pom poms, popsicle sticks and scissors.

“We also developed a smaller promotional-size Creativity Can, and sent out about 60,000 for free as a way to spark a nationwide conversation about the importance of creativity,” said Faber-Castell’s assistant brand manager of children’s products Michelle Seeber.

“Creativity test scores are declining, and as a company created and based on creativity, we thought it was our duty to bring this conversation to the forefront at home and incorporate ways for open-ended creativity in kids--especially during the ‘summer slide’ when they’re not in school and tend to forget what they’ve learned.”

The big Creativity Can was geared for “general crafting sessions,” noted Seeber. The Creativity Can Music and the five other new smaller cans (Critters, Art, Stories, Motion and Build—all at $10 each) likewise teach problem solving, stimulate creative thinking and encourage imagination.

The Music can includes various components for creating musical instruments—“random things like Easter eggs filled with beads or bells, whistles, rubber bands for making guitars, and spoons for making maracas or just tapping on the table like a drumstick,” said Dujmovic. Play, added Seeber, is all free-form.

“It’s about the beauty of creativity, so the can has no instructions,” said Seeber. “We give a few starter hints, and there are pictures on the can, but otherwise it’s open-ended in order to develop imagination, problem solving and critical thinking skills: Kids see an Easter egg and a spoon and figure out how they can put them together in making sounds.”

Parents are encouraged to take photos of their kids at Creativity Can play and upload them to Faber-Castell’s website and Facebook pages. In return, the company donates to the Lily Sarah Grace Fund for art programs in underfunded public elementary schools.

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