Did you know that recent studies have found that pretend play or imaginative play can support early childhood development, including early literacy skills?
Imaginative play helps children to act out stories, enhance their comprehension skills and structure their play.
Zara showed a big interest in fairies after I read a fairy book to her last year. I decided to buy her fairy wings and fairy headband as a special gift. She instantly got into character fluttering around.
One day we decided to act out the characters in a book that had a fairy in it. She really took on the character and expressed the feelings they had which encouraged her to use more vocabulary.
This is when we acted out being the Sugar Plum fairy in the fairytale story ‘Fairytale Hairdresser and the Sugar Plum fairy’ by Abbie Longstaff and Lauren Beard. It helped her gain a better understanding of different characters having different personalities and motivations. She was the brave fairy that used her magic to shrink and make them small.
Then assisted in tying up the mouse king and queen with a ribbon. We used some coloured wool and her teddys were the naughty mice. Using the extra props, enhanced the storytelling and made it more fun.
She loves role playing and acting out stories and now even creating her own stories. It has been amazing to see this creative side of her develop.