Tuesday, 7 January 2014

Encouraging Imaginations With Dress Up & Stories

One of the fun things about having a little person is that you get to experience the world through a childs eyes again....

I remember so fondly the days of fancy dress, losing myself in stories and making up silly imagination games of "House" and "School" that would keep me and my little sister entertained for hours.

I always remember my mum saying "You've just got home from school....why do you want to pretend you're back there?!" but for my sister & I nothing was more fun than lining our dolls and teddy bears up in a row and pretending we were the teachers!

When I worked in school settings, I loved to get involved in the putting together of the Imagination Corner...the schools would usually change it each term and I loved to come up with new ideas of what it could be....from the traditional Home Corner, to the more unusual ideas like the Circus Dressing Room or the Pizza Parlour....I loved seeing the kids have fun with their imaginations running wild!

Of course it's difficult to encourage imaginative play with a 9 month old, but I certainly plan on making sure it's a big part of Tyne's childhood - I think a great way of encouraging children to use their imaginations is to invest in some Dress Up costumes for them....I'm not even much of a superhero fan but I still couldn't resist this SuperBaby outfit and I think it's a nice little toe into the water of the world of things like book week fancy dress costumes for children.

I love the idea of children dressing up for Book Week...combining imaginative dress up and reading is such a wonderful idea, and there are so many fabulous book week for teachers fancy dress ideas too.

This year my niece of course went to her Book Week Dress Up Day as Cinderella....when Tyne gets his turn I'd love to see him as a little Harry Potter or Spot The Dog! (I'll let him choose of course...)

As well as imaginative games and costumes, I think reading is a big part of encouraging childrens imaginations.

I have always loved to read since I was able to, and that is a hobby that has never left me....I think my love of books is what encouraged my love of writing.

I really want Tyne to enjoy books too and was keen to introduce him to them as soon as possible - we did have some early picture books but to my disappointment he never was very interested in them.

I took the chance on buying him some childrens books for Christmas - I bought Twas The Night Before Christmas, Room On The Broom, The Gruffalo, and Dear Santa - the runaway hits have certainly been The Gruffalo Touch & Feel book and Room On The Broom Sound book - which is fine with me as Room On The Broom is my all-time favourite children's book!

Tyne gets so excited when I start to read it to him that he squeals for the first few pages, and listens intently for the rest of it - he knows to wait until the end for his turn to press all of the sound buttons too!

So in short, I can't wait to be able to lose myself in the imagination of a child again as soon as Tyne is old enough to enjoy some creative, imaginative play...and until then, the fancy dress costumes and story sessions will continue!

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