Try this exercise with your son or daughter – it would work well for children who are around 10 years old. Tell your child:
“ Take a look at this picture. I want you to write a story using this picture. Use your imagination. There are no rights or wrongs. Don’t worry about a perfect story. Don’t worry about whether we will like it or not. Just write what comes to your mind. Don’t worry about spelling mistakes or grammar etc. You have 15 minutes to create this story.”
After your son/daughter completes this exercise, give another picture. This time change your instructions a bit.
“Write whatever you think of. Make it really imaginative. Make sure there are no mistakes. Your sentences should be short and simple. Even your younger brother should be able to understand it.”
What do you think will happen?
Chances are that the first story is likely to be more interesting and imaginative.
You can try this test with any picture (More evocative the picture the better is the response).
What is the point?
More instructions do not add clarity. Often such instructions tend to restrain thinking. There is more worry about complying with the instructions.
This is true with adults as well.