"Let the child be the scriptwriter, the director and the actor in his own play" Magda Gerber
So I'm sure we can all remember raiding our mothers wardrobes, slipping in to her stiletto's and smashing her good lipstick around our tiny lips, just so we could try to emulate her! Sounds familiar? well it should as this is imaginative play at its best.
Small children love to re-create scenarios, and imitate adults. You might see them deep in conversation on their toy phone or pretending to read a book that's actually upside down!
Imaginative play is all about dressing up, role playing and most importantly letting their imaginations take them to a whole new level. It also helps with their Social, Learning and emotional development.
Encouraging your child to use their imagination will open up a new world of adventures. Something as simple as a plastic tea set and play food will give your little one the opportunity to be creative with their toys. Kitchen containers with lids will keep them entertained for a while as they try to find the matching lids. Each container could have a name and special job! Plastic containers also work well for their mathematical skills, as they can be stacked to form various heights.
Toddlers loved to get involved around the house and they love helping out with chores. If you pretend its for a special occasion like a tea party, the excitement will be mighty and make them feel very important that they are responsible enough to help you. Of course with lots of praise for all their effort will make them more likely to want to do it again. Why not dress up for a magical tea party and invite their toys as special guests?
Here are some of the benefits of Imaginative Play
Toddlers get to relax and unwind from their normal routine
Opportunities will arise to work out problems and create solutions
They will work and strengthen their language, listening and visual skills
Social skills will be enhanced as they learn to share and take turns
Their imaginations can run wild as they pretend to be someone they adore
So what can we do to enhance imaginative play?
This is where your imagination can be put to the test. Have a look at the list below of play ideas
A trip to the doctors
Being a vet
Living on a farm
Being a school teacher
A trip in to space
Diving under the sea
Exploring in a secret garden
Working on the garden
Exploring the jungle
And the list goes on!
There is so much more you could work with but try and channel in to something your toddler would be interested in too.
There is no better time then now as we continue to be in lockdown to get creative and get those little imaginations flowing!