In the Classroom: The Doodlebugs
October 14, 2014
The Doodlebugs have discovered new and exciting things through dramatic play.
The children love gathering pretend food and placing items into small bags. Maya, Sebastian and Uzayr are now standing, taking steps and walking. Exploring the kitchen area is a new experience for them. They are moving their bodies to bend and reach onto the shelves and opening the cabinets to get the dishes. They crawl or walk to the table with dishes and climb into the chairs.
The older Doodlebugs, Harper, Derya, and Orin, offer help and share the food. They pretend to feed their friends veggies and pizza. Their play sparks conversation and we hear the children use words, such as eat, milk, and cup while pretending to eat and drink.
Another dramatic play experience is dress-up where we grab our favorite big hats, scarves and costumes. The children take great pleasure choosing their hats and can hardly wait to look at themselves in the mirror. Some children enjoy carrying a small bag and filling it with small toys from around the classroom.
Teachers support this experience by offering choices and language. We talk with the children about the color, size and shape of the bag. We suggest items that may fit in the bag and ones that may be too big. The children grasp the concept of different sizes, making choices, and they gain the sense of pride that comes with accomplishing a task.
Dramatic play helps children practice social interaction. While role-playing, children learn important social skills, such as empathy. This type of play also encourages expressive language. Children are motivated to engage in conversation even if it's just babbling.
Dramatic play is interesting, fun and exciting to infants and young toddlers. But, it also lays important foundations that will help children navigate the world around them as they grow.