Dramatic Play is a fantastic opportunity to let your child use their imagination to take on roles of different people and things. In doing so, they make sense of the world around them.
Exposure to evolving thematic play areas helps children with social skills and oral language as well. Kiddos take turns and conduct social experiments of their own through role playing and interacting in an environment where they wouldn't necessarily have the chance to engage in otherwise.
Environmental print - small, little, age and theme appropriate words sprinkled throughout the room and in the play area not only introduce the kiddos to letters, words, and words that will eventually become recognizable, it also serves at launching points of conversation for a richer and deeper imaginative experience.
In our classroom during free play, we extended the train depot area to an actual little train where the kids used tickets and different students took on well defined roles. Most of this creative interaction is spontaneous and done without any prompting from our teachers. Children use their personal experiences and exposure to a specific subject matter (either real, or from media) and learn from each other.
You can buy refreshments while on our Polar Express (see our menu photo above). Therefore, you may extend your creative play activities to have a kitchen/bakery set up where some of the kids can create the treats that will be served on the train.
The train depot idea served as an excellent background to our Holiday open house and presentation. The kids performed The Little Engine that Could.
At our school, we periodically change our creative play areas to match the themes we have schedule for that week.
If you'd like to get the print files for this creative play, please visit our shop here. We are sharing the free sample below.
We wish you the best teaching experience!
The Learning Garden Team