Spin-off of Preschooler "Scripts" - Imaginary Play

Updated on May 06, 2013
K.B. asks from Detroit, MI
6 answers

The questions about kids and imaginary role playing got me thinking - how much do your kids "play pretend"?

Because DD doesn't do this much at all. She is now 5, but going through the preschooler years, she never made up "scripts" that we had to say or follow. I know a few little girls the same age who are very big into their doll babies and make up elaborate scenarios with them, taking them shopping, throwing them birthday parties, etc. DD never got into that either. It's not that she has no imagination - she is very creative in other ways, likes to do art projects, that sort of thing. You can give her piece of paper with one squiggley drawn on it and she will turn it into something completely different. Sometimes she will get puppets or dolls/stuffed animals to "talk" to each other. She is very smart and has lots of friends. Her kindergarten teacher has told me how creative and imaginative she is. And she will play pretend with other kids if they initiate it, but she's just never been one to come up with anything herself.

Should it be anything I should worry about? Or is it just the normal differences between different kids? So much is made of how important imagination and creative play is in their mental development and so then I wonder if DD is going to end up lacking something later in life because she doesn't get much into pretend play now.

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answers from New York on

Oh, dear no. Do not worry at all! Normal differences is the name of the "game."

Creativity manifests in many ways, i.e. art projects, music, dancing, even playing with others.

I was wondering if I should be worried about my DD, because ALL she does is role play :-).

4 moms found this helpful


answers from Austin on

Nothing to worry about. I love watching a funny movie, but could I write a script..no way.. But I could set up every scene with perfect props and costumes..

I could cater for the crew (actually have). I could organize the transportation, and living arrangements .

Every child has their own abilities and own way of being creative..

Talents are discovered by availability and exposure...

Your child will be who she is, just encourage her with experiences.

2 moms found this helpful


answers from Detroit on

My kids play pretend daily. I will also engage in pretend play from time to time to encourage it. I don't think that you should "worry" about your daughter, but encourage it when you can.
My kids have written plays, create puppet shows, etc. And will get all of tge neighborhood kids to join in too.
There are a ton of great places that offer improv for kids, or go comedy-if she likes to be funny. Or cirque among us in Livonia might inspire her to play circus-and you can do drop in classes there.

2 moms found this helpful


answers from Honolulu on

My kids play pretend a lot.
Most of kids play, is pretend, or imagination based.
Pretend/imaginary play, is not just about playing dolly or whatnot or coming up with "scripts."
But also about thinking up scenarios... games, interactions, etc.
Even while playing with his Legos or building blocks, my son for example is the whole while... imagining scenarios about it and constructs things all about it and plays the various "parts" in it, with his pieces. Even if it is just him, playing by himself or with us.

Even while out in the playground playing... kids are doing imaginary play and pretend play. While chasing each other or acting out scenarios. This is all, imaginative pretend play.

My kids are 10 and 6, and they still do imaginary play and pretend play.
Even while drawing, my 10 year old daughter for example, is "imagining" a scene or atmosphere or "story" about what she is drawing. It is not a non-fiction, drawing. It is fiction. Imagination based.
She draws something, and will tell me ALL about it. It is not just a tree with flowers. It is a scene, a story, a feeling, a "world" that she has drawn and with characters.

When my daughter was 2... she had 2 regular imaginary friends that she named. And told us all about and about their lives. Even at her age now... she remembers them and tells us, because she remembers everything very well.

Kids, do many things that are from their imaginations and pretend. No matter what age.
But we may not realize it.

Your daughter... IS doing imaginative and pretend play.
There is no one way to do this.
Your daughter, is.

Creativity... is not just about "scripts."
Each person, is different.
There are some who are more literal. And some that are more fiction based.
How do you think, scientists, for example, discovered or invented things???? Or how do you think writers came up with stories?
By imagination.
By exploring.
By thinking up their own ideas.
By doing art.
By making models of what they imagine.
By creating something out of a squiggly line.

Get your daughter some drawing books.
From Barnes and Noble, they have "Doodle" books. It is real great!
My daughter has these.

2 moms found this helpful


answers from Detroit on

My son was never big on pretend playing. I remember asking him to play doctor and fix up his bear when he was about 4. He told me, but Mom I'm not a doctor. He is now 10 and while his friends love books like Diary of A Wimpy Kid & Goosebumps, he reads biographies and historical fiction.

Sounds like your daughter participates in pretend play because she wants to play with her friends, but her creativity is in the arts. Crayons and construction paper are a bit cheaper than princess dresses anyway. :-)



answers from Detroit on

I don't think it's anything at all to be concerned about. Different development for all kids. If she's using her imagination as she sees fit, she's still using it. Does she HAVE baby dolls to join in with other friends on the pretend? Maybe she just thinks one mama (you) is enough. Or you're doing a good enough job, she doesn't have to.

No worries.

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