Why Pretend Play is So Important for Kids

Physical play isn't the only kind of play - it's really important that we encourage kids to use their imagination too. Using our imagination is a critical cognitive skill that will help us throughout life. At Rotorua Home Based Childcare, when we encourage kids to pretend play, we're creating opportunities for developing their language, social skills creative thinking.


Research has shown that participation in pretend games is great for young kid's communication skills, particularly an increase in language usage. Pretend play will allow your child to experience the power of language and to learn about the connection between the spoken and written word.

Thinking and Creativity

An important benefit of early pretend play in a child's life is the exposure it naturally provides to a variety of problems that need solving. Children find themselves drawing on and building up important cognitive thinking skills that they will continue to use in every aspect of their future life.

By encouraging your child to use their imagination and pretend play, you're providing the opportunity for increasing their capacity for intellectual and emotional flexibility and, ultimately, creativity. Some researchers have found that early imaginative play was associated with increased creative performance years later.

Social Development

Pretend play or make-believe play is not just well recognised as a valuable component of a child’s cognitive skills but also their social development. A kid who gets involved in pretend play is actively experimenting with feelings and emotional roles, both positive and negative. This kind of play has clear benefits in improving a child's self-control, self-awareness and their awareness of the feelings and perspectives of others.

Through playing make-believe games, children learn critical life skills from taking turns and sharing responsibility to building social relationships. And equally important, they're having lots of fun!

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