|storytelling with Melissa and Doug blocks|
He has played with a set of fruits and vegetables at a few friends' houses many times, so his grandparents have kindly bought him a set (this one) for Christmas. I'm pretty sure this will aid his imaginary play (and his learning). Among other things, he uses them to:
- plant and pick a pretend farm
- cook meals (soups, stews, main courses, and desserts), quizzing us on what ingredients would go in which course.
- sorting which are fruits and which are vegetables
- pretend shop (buy them, pay, get change)
- add and subtract (one banana + two strawberries = 3 fruits)
So, the shopper in me thinks, "he LOVES this kind of pretend play. I need to get him a set of pots and pans and plates and cutlery! And a play kitchen!"
I've spent the past 30 minutes reading reviews of this:
I know he'd just jump with delight if he got up and found it assembled by the Christmas tree. But, would this really help him to pretend play more? Or would he do just as well if I said the coffee table was a pretend stove, and his crayons were forks, and pieces of paper were plates? Or made him a kitchen with a cardboard box? (I'm posing the question. My answer? I think the fancy set probably WOULD help him, but I'm not sure for how long. I suspect he'd love it, and make us act out pretend scenes mercilessly for days, but he might tire of it).
|Using our favorite pretend play "prop" - a very simple road quilt|
On a related note, his grandparents have also gifted him with this Story Sparkers game for Christmas. I think it looks great - has anyone played it?
Of course, every gift doesn't HAVE to be educational or aid imaginative play. But it is nice when they do. This is all just random thinking as I browse Amazon.com on this lazy Sunday morning. As lazy as a Sunday morning can ever be with a toddler and a newborn...
Comment: Do you buy a lot of pretend play props for your kids, or do you encourage them to make their own worlds using what they have? Do you think having multiple kids changes your answer? I think if both of my children were at an age to play with imaginative toys together, I might be more likely to splurge on some large props to give myself a little time to do housework while they entertained themselves.
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