5 Reasons why your child should play, pretend
How fantasy play helps children develop essential life skills
It’s a world in which a rock becomes a T-Rex, a stick becomes a wand, and a tiara transforms a little girl into a princess. For children, fantasy land is a fun – and important – place to visit!
What is fantasy play?
Fantasy play is ‘playing pretend’ but it’s so much more than that – it’s also helping your child develop essential life skills.
In fantasy play, children use their imaginations to transform objects and themselves into something else entirely and act out different scenarios, alone or with friends.
Here are five essential skills developed while playing pretend:
- Language skills: Fantasy play allows children to practise their language skills and understand the power of language. They can expand their vocabularies and experiment with their words without fear of embarrassment.
- Social and emotional skills: Dramatic play allows children to experiment with life’s social and emotional roles. Pretending to be someone else teaches the skill of empathy, enabling children to test out various emotions and the effect they have on others.
- Problem-solving: Imaginative play creates opportunities for children to try out new ways of thinking and different ideas. When playing pretend, children are faced with a variety of problems to solve, helping them develop thinking skills they’ll use throughout their lives.
- Facing their fears: A fantasy realm helps children learn to face their fears as they fight and overcome the things that scare them in a safe setting.
- Physical development: Imaginative play allows children to express themselves both verbally and non-verbally, using all their muscles and senses to achieve this. They develop fine motor skills while using art materials, and gross muscle skills come into play in activities that involve larger muscle groups, such as building a fort or pretending to be superheroes in the playground.
Toys to nurture your child’s imagination
Foster your child’s fantasy world with toys that spark the imagination. Ideas include:
- Your old shoes, hats, and other accessories
- Plush toys
- Dress up
- Kitchen appliances
- Shop accessories
- Transport toys
- Felt cut-outs
Truly Toys stock a wide range of toys that promote fantasy play. To find out more about our educational toys for all ages, please visit our website or contact us for a quote: 011 618 1337 / email@example.com.
- The Importance of Pretend Play – Scholastic (https://www.scholastic.com/parents/kids-activities-and-printables/activities-for-kids/arts-and-craft-ideas/importance-pretend-play.html)
- The Importance of Fantasy in Children’s Play – HealthGuidance (https://www.healthguidance.org/entry/15083/1/the-importance-of-fantasy-in-childrens-play.html)
- 5 benefits of imaginative play – Living and Loving (https://www.livingandloving.co.za/child/5-benefits-of-imaginative-play)