Imaginative Play Benefits and How To Encourage It
Imaginative play, or pretend play, is not only fun for our little ones; it’s essential for their healthy development.
While hosting a tea party, or pretending to be an aeroplane flying through a field doesn’t look like much, your child is developing their imagination, and skills in critical thinking, problem solving and self-expression.
Imaginative play is often experimenting with the social and emotional aspects of real life.
It’s a tool we as adults also apply in a grown up way. We need to ‘imagine’ different scenarios as we make every day choices in order to problem solve, and be aware of possible outcomes.
It only comes naturally to us because we practiced it through imaginative play as a child.
How often does your child repeat a sentence you didn’t realise you said so often? (Sometimes to your horror!) Or act out a gesture you realise is yours.
The act of mimicking helps them learn from what’s happening around them, and develop their social skills.
It’s how they make sense of the world and begin to identify with grown ups.
Some children fall into imaginative play easily, others may need a little bit more encouragement and guidance.
It’s important they learn how to use their imagination to act out the world from their perspective, and to enjoy being anything they want to be.
Here are some great ideas to help your little one grow by using their imagination