Friday, August 28, 2009

Why Pretend Play?

One way children learn is by imagining and doing. Have you ever seen a child pick up a block and pretend it's a phone? Young children are just beginning to understand the difference between the two.

Pretend play gives children opportunities to realize the differences between reality and fantasy. When children pretend to be someone else, they have the experience of "walking in someone else's shoes." Through these repeated pretend opportunities and maturation, children will begin to see their world from another's point of view. It's the way we as humans can develop empathy.

Children delight in the adult's perception of or participation in their pretend play. Through these repeated pretend opportunities, they begin to see the power of language. Recognizing what language can do is an important pre-reading skill. Children learn that words create the story. They begin to see the connection between written words and the spoken word.

From playing "make believe" to making plays, children will take center stage with a new exhibit at DCM, The Play's the Thing, which opens Monday, September 14.

Click here for more information about our new exhibit, The Play's the Thing.

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