Kids love to play pretend. They enjoy creating whole worlds to explore and unique characters to interact with out of thin air. Not only do parents find this type of play simply adorable it also allows them to determine if their child has a particular affinity to a specific area. It also provides an deeper insight into their complex personalities. Finally it is also very beneficial to a child's development. Read more...
Are you one of the persons who are so amazed at how little kids never run out of fun ideas while they are playing? Do you also wonder how they come up with the different characters and dialogues in their stories? It's like they are in their own little magical world, living their magical lives and never running out of magic potion.
It is incredible to see that a child can turn literally any object into anything with just their imagination. Even a simple inanimate chair can be transformed into a magical animal. It goes to show that children have the strongest imagination. This type of play is very important in developing a kid's creativity. Let's go back to the previous example. It takes lots of imagination and creativity to come up with a unique character associated with a chair. As adults, we might say that it's very simple. A chair can be a horse or a dog. For kids, it might be a magical unicorn that can fly or a glitter-breathing dragon. See the difference? Kids have unique thinking capabilities that we can only understand by watching them play or much better by playing with them. It is also very important that we let them express their creativity. When kids know that adults appreciate their ideas, they feel happier and more encouraged to use their creative juices.
Pretend play also helps in the development of language skills. Engaging in role-playing games is a great opportunity for kids to socialise with other kids. Although sometimes they have their language of their own, it is a good thing that they get to know other kids and interact with them. Children who are just starting to talk will learn faster if they are speaking to kids of the same age. You will be surprised when your child speaks a word that you have never heard him say before. Asking them to describe what they are doing will also help in their vocabulary. They will expand their vocabulary to include adjectives and other descriptive words so you can understand them. And that is a good thing because speaking is an essential life skill. Not just speaking, but also listening. When your child communicates with you or with other kids, listening is required too.
Kids also discover their likes and dislikes through pretend play. At the start of their role-playing, they decide on which character they want to play. They also pick their costume and other props they need to use. They learn the concept of taking turns, compromise, and leadership. When playing kitchen and restaurant, kids need a chef, a waiter, and a customer. They first agree on who they will be, then they gather things they need to build their own kitchen and restaurant. It does not matter if they have an incomplete set of pots, plates, and utensils. Kids will find ways to successfully open their pretend business and start their pretend play. When there is no pot, they will use a can. When there is no stove, they will use a piece of wood. There is truly no limit to their imagination.
Among the other benefits stated above, the most important life lesson kids can learn from pretend play is understanding other people. By playing different characters, kids will know how to act when with other people. For example, once they knew that chefs work hard to serve us our favourite food, kids will respect a chef's job and be more understanding. Once they knew what a police officer's role is, they will know how to behave themselves in-front of them policeman. Kids will know the value of empathy, which sad to say is slowly decreasing these days.
Pretend play is not just beneficial to kids. It helps the parents too. By watching and participating with them, parents will have a better understanding of their children. They will have an idea of their kids' personalities and how to deal with them. It is a perfect way to build a stronger family relationship that will be appreciated by kids even as they grow older.