Children love to pretend and role play is an important part of learning as it not only fuels the imagination, but also helps to develop social skills and create a greater awareness of the wider world. By being involved in creative play, children can also develop literary and numeracy skills, as well as the effects of other educational influences, while having lots of fun.
By playing with realistic, but child-friendly versions of adult objects, children of all ages can explore safely and develop confidence and independence too. Dressing up is an example of role play which most children love and there are plenty of props to help develop storytelling and make-believe, as well as ones which reflect real life in miniature.
Wooden toy kitchens are a fantastic option for little girls and boys and can be a useful tool for teaching them about different foods as well as general safety. Work benches are another popular choice as they include lots of bits and pieces for children to figure out and learn how to use. Market stalls, castles and various household appliances also prompt role play and are easy to share and ideal for children playing together.
By playing with good-quality and long-lasting toys, children are encouraged to respect them and their purpose can be expanded by adding accessories as time goes on. As well as enjoying the toys, they develop good problem-solving skills and begin to use initiative and play socially.
As well as teaching children the importance of turn-taking, teamwork and negotiation, cooperative role play also prompts effective communication with adults who can easily engage in accepting make-believe cups or tea or a piece of pretend cake!
There are a vast number of childrens playsets available which are delightful to play with, durable and beautifully crafted. From simple cleaning sets to entire houses or workspaces, every budget and child is catered for. Respected brands like Melissa & Doug, Brio Kidcraft and Janod all provide good quality toys which will see children through many years of enjoyment and early learning.