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The Power of Pretend

Posted by Patience on March 27, 2009 at 7:00 AM in Patience
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dress up love

"This is a very special princess swing. Would you girls like to ride it together?" Melanie said to Lucy and Lila. Both girls hopped right on and discussed all things fantasy while they pumped the teeter totter swing built for two.

This bought us more time to talk as the girls played. It was only the beginning of the wonderful world of pretend Melanie created. At lunch she asked the girls, "I have a great spot in my cafeteria just for big girls like you, would like to eat your lunch there?"
After they were done, her daughter Lila came in and Melanie said, "Oh, you are done with your lunch? Oh yes, you girls may be excused to go to class now." The girls giggled and ran off to play.

I was in total awe of this very creative mother and friend of mine. She reminded me of all the magic of pretend. It is so useful and such a lovely way to help children through the routine of everyday. I find I like to play it myself from time to time. It's a way to try dreams on. I sometimes imagine myself standing in the middle of a gallery showing of my photography. I'm wearing an adorable and chic skirt with a cap sleeve shirt on and dangly earrings. I greet each guest with warm smiles as we dicsuss my work on the wall. I practice what I'll say while I do the dishes.

So today we play office and school, or my own personal favorite, puppy dog. I forgot how much fun it can be. What is the pretend scenario your kids love? Do you use props or is it the good old imaginary tea cup in hand? What dreams are you imagining in your own mind? Do share in the comments.


Kristen K writes...

Thanks for this post. My 3 year old daughter is struggling with seperation anxiety and your post reminded me this morning that I needed to remember to stay creative with her to help get both of us through this. You three do such a great job! I never miss a post! Thanks again.

Mariella writes...

We've been playing a lot of Restaurant, Library, Farmer's Market, and my daughter came up with a theme party she can't seem to let go of..."Seasons Party", where she celebrates the 4 seasons. :) Lots of mishmash stuff all over the house, but it's fun! She also likes to occasionally call herself, Supersaver Reilly, which always makes me smile. Happy Weekend!! xoxo, ~ M.

Kelly writes...

Anna Mae, my 3 year old, carries on conversations with many an object that really shouldn't be talking. I am expected to be the voice of the object -the sun, her blankey, characters on the TV, the food she's eating for lunch, etc. Sometimes its people she wants to talk to but aren't around like Papa or Santa. I love love love being these things for her!

nancy writes...

Bless you for playing pretend. I wish, wish, wish I even LIKED to play pretend. I spend a ton of time with my daughter. I love playing everything ... except pretend. I hate pretend. HATE. IT. I wish I never, ever had to play it again. Does that make me an awful person? Mother?

Thankfully, my husband is GREAT at playing pretend. I can take care of reading, playing in the yard, going to gymnastics, swimming and the playground. We can cook and bake and tell stories. But god, please, limit my pretend time.

PatienceAuthor Profile Page writes...

Lol Nancy! You sound like you are doing just a lovely job, pretend or no pretend. ;) Doesn't every parent hate some part of parenting? I hate the management at the park- I go there so the kids will play by themselves, I just want to talk to my friends. I don't mind a good game of chase every now and then, or the occasional slide but this up and down from the swing 57,000 times? forget about it ! Good thing my husband doesn't mind too...

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