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01 Jun '15

Seven Ways to Play Pretend

Posted by Annie Messing

Summer is almost here and my children are so excited to be home with their toys! They have such a good time setting up play scene after play scene in our playroom. I never know if a doctor's office, a school, or a horse ranch is going to sprout up from their imaginative playtime together.

Even if you just have babies at home right now, you can begin to introduce the idea of pretend play by making up stories with them. If you have toddlers, you can set up a little scene for them and see how they interact with it. I truly believe pretend play is a foundational way for children of all ages to learn many important skills. From learning to share to working out feelings - it's truly a beautiful, therapeutic experience for them. Sit back and be amazed!

Here are seven wonderful ways for your kids to play pretend this summer:

1) Hazel Village Animals - with their cheerful soft faces and easy to dress outfits, they make wonderful playtime buddies.

2) Haba Doctor's Medical Kit - this set comes with everything needed to set up a pretend medical clinic!

3) Littleland book - with colorful sweet illustrations, your toddler will be delighted by all the things there are to find. And you may be surprised how fun it is to read along too!

4) Mini Play Tent - add in a few stuffed animals and a pretend campsite is all ready to go. Just add smores!

5) Kinetic Sand - on really hot or rainy days, set this amazing sand on a table with the kids and watch them create. The minimal amount of clean-up required is an added perk.

6) Play Silks - create a bandana, a cape or a colorful streamer with these lightweight squares of silk.

7) Slack Line - for older children, this looks like a fantastic addition for the backyard. They can have fun and work on team-building skills at the same time!