How to help your child grow their imagination
Some kids are naturally imaginative. They will pretend to be astronauts, teachers and super heroes. Others rarely play pretend.
You might think that pretend play is cute and nothing more than that. But pretend play is more than just cute, it is a very important part of your child’s development. It build a child’s imagination and helps them to learn. When a child uses their imagination their brain is firing and they are learning and growing. Imaginative play builds social and emotional skills, while they are acting and pretending. This sort of play also helps build their confidence.
My boys were sitting in the shopping cart at the store today acting out a scene of caterpillars and butterflies in the forest. I have noticed that when my boys take on other roles and characters they cooperate with each other well. They use their imaginations and you can see an air of confidence about them. They come up with some very creative and interesting ideas. It is fun for them and fun to watch.
I noticed that my boys would pretend play more often when they had costumes or dress up clothing around. When the dress up clothing was not in sight they would go stretches without playing pretend. To help foster this sort of play, which I think highly of, we put their costumes in an open bin where they had easy access to it. If it is out of sight it tended to be out of mind.
There is a large market for children’s dress up clothing. However, if you have boys, pretend clothing is harder to come by. The Great Pretenders has a large variety of play clothing for both boys and girls. Your girls can be a fairy, a princess, a storybook character or hop right out of the medieval times. Boys can don a cape, be a doctor, a knight, or other characters. My boys absolute favorite product from the Great Pretender line has to be ‘Color Costumes’.
This great line of pretend costumes, allows your child to use their imagination in coloring and personalizing their pretend clothing to their liking. My boys loved coloring in their own cape and crown and then acting out a scene of “save the penguin from the bad guy”. To check out all the great pretend clothing and color costumes, go to http://www.greatpretenders.ca
If your child isn’t playing pretend, they may need a nudge. Here are some ways you can foster pretend play in your house.
- Have lots of play clothes and costumes for them to dress up in.
- Have the pretend play clothing where they can easily access it without assistance.
- If they are having a play date, pull out the play clothing.
- Have a tea set, kitchen set or other imaginative play items around.
- Let them have access to old house hold items they can use to pretend.
- Interact with them and teach them how to make up a story or scene.
What other ways do you foster imaginative play in your house? Are you kids a fan of make believe or do they need help getting started?
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