Why is Pretend Play so important?
Pretend play is nourishment for growing minds. Whether your child is pretending to work behind a cash register, whipping you up an artificial festive feast in their play kitchen, or plastering up a sore finger, their roleplay is teaching them a lot about the world.
So, why is pretend play so integral to a child’s development, and why should you embrace it this Christmas?
- It encourages creativity and imagination. In fact, a child’s capacity for creativity is intrinsically linked to how frequently they play act fictional situations.
- It builds their vocabulary and communication skills with others. It gives them the opportunity to use words in different contexts, often when talking with another person (or teddy!)
- It deepens their ability to empathise with others. When children assume the role of a character, they try to understand how they would feel in that character’s position. If playing with a friend, there will likely be a bit of conflict over who gets to play the ‘goodie’ and the ‘baddie’ too, which develops important conflict resolution skills.
- It supports physical development. Let’s not forget, with all this running around, play acting can often be a workout in itself!
Our favourite Pretend play toys
Pretend play is such a natural part of a child’s development that they will often roleplay with whatever is to hand (we’ve all been given stones as ‘money’, haven’t we?). But the right toys can really bring their imaginary scenarios to life.
Delight your child this Christmas with our wide selection of quality, sustainable toys in Malta – all guaranteed to get their creative juices flowing!
From a Swedish brand with a passion for products that allow kids to be kids, this collection is perfect for your child’s roleplay games. The fun range of classic wooden toys make ideal stocking fillers, including interactive vehicles, such as an ambulance, fire truck and double decker bus with little wooden people. Watch as your child cooks you Christmas dinner on the stove, prepares their clothes on the ironing board, or serves up slices of delicious (wooden) birthday cake!
Created in 1981, Plan Toys is an award-winning pioneer of sustainable play. Their eco-friendly toys are made from chemical-free wood, non-formaldehyde glue, organic colour pigments, and water-based dyes. This range boasts some wonderfully detailed roleplay toys, including a wooden dentist set (complete with removable teeth and tools), a secret agent set for top secret missions, and even a vlogger set, so your child can hone their skills in front of the camera! Going green this Christmas has never been so fun.
Founded over 10 years ago, Little Dutch offers a range of fun, design-led toys that not only inspire children’s play, but also look great in a modern home. In a range of classic pastel colours, roleplaying toys include a 20-piece toolbox for budding mechanics, an adorable market stall complete with striped awning, and a barista-style coffee machine (can you believe we just had to settle for a pretend kettle in our day?!)
Ooh Noo? We say Ooh Yes! Ooh Noo toys are made from natural, ethically sourced materials designed to last a long time. Their toys are bound to inspire imaginary play this Christmas, with items including a chic toy pram, beautifully designed building blocks and a toy wheelbarrow – which just so happens to be the perfect size for a small person!
For exquisitely crafted children’s toys, take a step back in time with the Playtime collection. Your child can enjoy riding a vintage race car (available in a selection of eye-catching pastels and classic designs) or hop on board a rocking horse. Stepping back even further in time, the Playtime collection also features a rocking woolly mammoth!
Inspire your child’s pretend play with these vibrant illustrated children’s books, each dedicated to a significant cultural figure in history. Teach your child about the life and works of Albert Einstein, Mahatma Gandhi and Greta Thunberg, or introduce them to film legends like Bruce Lee and music icons like Aretha Franklin and Bob Dylan. The sky is the limit for your little one, as these ideal Christmas gifts perfectly illustrate.
Keen to see more of our children’s toys this festive season? Find our sustainable collection at leifandlillie.com and find the perfect Christmas gift today. For regular updates, follow us at @Leifandlillie on Instagram.
Pretend Play – Doctor