We’ve all seen our children “playing pretend” and creating imaginary situations in which they will typically reenact scenarios they’ve been in with grown-ups or something they’ve seen on television. But, did you know that imaginary play is vital to a child’s development? Kids will usually do this naturally, but we can certainly help encourage this type of play.
With summer ramping up and an endless expanse of time to fill with activities, imaginary play is a perfect indoor activity that stimulates a child’s imagination and their brain! Start collecting costume pieces (resale shops are perfect places to find these for next to nothing!), old jewelry and cell phones, and any other props to keep on hand so your child has access to lots of scenarios to reenact!
There are many benefits to imaginative play, including the development of the following:
Social and emotional skills.
Through reenactment, children can identify with the adult world. You’ll often see that they’re recreating a trip to the zoo, or grocery shopping, cleaning the house, etc. All things they’ve done with or around adults! By playing pretend, children can develop empathy for others through imitation or interaction with other children in the reenactment. They also learn to express their feelings when they pretend to be others.
Listen to kids when they’re playing pretend and you’ll probably overhear vocabulary and phrases you didn’t even know they knew! By imitating or reenacting, they get to practice these bigger words and longer phrases!
While playing pretend, children learn to share and problem solve. When they’re playing together, they may come across a puzzling situation and they can try working it out in a safe way. Studies have even shown that “rough-housing” (moderated) can actually help develop the frontal lobe of the brain that regulates behavior.
Give your little one’s imagination a boost by listening to these podcasts!
Want to learn more about Kids ‘R’ Kids Learning Academy of Houston Metro located in Richmond, Texas? Our mission is to provide secure, nurturing, and educational environments for children ages 6 weeks – 12 years. We help children to bloom into responsible, considerate, and contributing members of society. For more information, give us a call or stop by for a tour! We’d love to get to know you and your family.