Well, the weather finally did it – sent the kids scuttling inside. And now, they are bored and waiting for you to come up with something for them to do. Fun indoor games are not as hard to come up with as one might think. There’s a little something for everyone as you let your imagination search for fun indoor games to play with your children or for them to play together.
Of all the indoor games to come up with, pretending is one of the easiest for which to prepare. Experts are now saying that pretending is one of the most needful games that your child can play. Through pretending, children learn to think about how another person feels; they learn to role play as they mimic people that they know or imagine about people they don’t know; they learn to take turns as they play pretend with others who may want to be the same character they want to be; they learn to treat animals well because in pretending to be an animal, they learn how it feels to be hurt. Sometimes, on a deeper level, children re-enact a time and place where that didn’t quite work out as they wanted it to. When they replay it in pretending, they can feel better about what went on because in some way, they have taken more control of the situation in their own minds. There are many ways that pretending and role-playing is good for your child. All you need to do is have some basic items around to help the game go well.
Keep some old towels or sheets around so that the child can pretend to go camping or go hiking in a cave. Throwing a sheet over some chairs makes a great cave or tent. Keep some empty paper towel roles handy for emergency swords or microphones. A scarf or towel pinned to the shoulders of a favorite shirt makes a great cape for the super hero. Some old necklaces, ribbons, and pins are great dress up helpers for little girls and I can still remember running around in one my dad’s ties and his shoes that we were way to big for me. Make sure that your “stuff” is less important than your child and, within reason, let them use some of your household and personal items for their pretend games.
What is even more fun for your child is when you play pretend as well. When you welcome you child’s teddy bear, aka the new super hero or the new Preschool teacher, at the dinner table, you’ve entered into his or her game and it becomes more exciting because you are willing to play.
As we’ve already mentioned, your part may be to keep some supplies on hand and to participate when called upon. However, sometimes as the parent, you may need to give a little boost to the idea by asking them what they would like to pretend about. There are lots of choices:
Being a School teacher
Being a pirate
Being a favorite super hero
Being a great warrior
Having a space ship
Being a doctor or nurse
Being a fire truck driver
Being a movie star
All you have to do is ask the right question and get the game going. Your child is sure to have some ideas of his or her own as well. Help make pretending one of your child’s favorite fun indoor games – and maybe even a favorite outdoor game.
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