Costumes for Kids’ Games
By Editorial Staff
Contributed by Info Guru Aurora LaJambre
Tie on a flowing cape and soar around the living room for a minute, and you’ll see how wearing costumes stirs the imagination.
But fairy wings and pirate eye patches are only half of the equation. Next they have to figure out what to do – Who to save? Which mountains to climb?
When your little ones don these costumes for kids games, they will spark ever more imaginative play.
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10. World creation
If wearing a tutu adds a little pizzazz to the day, imagine what an hour of unstructured free time and children’s costumes can do. Learning to create characters and worlds gets their brains ticking – they think up all kinds of landscapes and special abilities. Whether they’re spinning around the backyard like fairies or haunting dark corners as little monsters, there’s no end to the adventures they can concoct went set loose.
9. Show time
Give kids an audience of parents and dolls, and they’ll put on a show. Use a rug or strips of fabric for the stage and fashion a microphone from an empty paper towel roll, and props from craft supplies. Lend them a few shiny, but durable accessories and scrap fabric to fashion their rock star or theater diva costumes.
From baking plastic cakes in the play kitchen to enjoying elegant tea parties with a few of their best teddy bears, children like playing house. It’s an opportunity to act out other roles – to be the parent nurturing the doll baby or the aunt fixing things with a toy hammer. They don’t need elaborate costumes, a few clothes that no longer fit will do.
7. Extreme ruffles
No matter how many shin guards and riding helmets are in her future, the girly girl stage is totally normal and no indicator of her future fashion sense. Pretending to be a princess, ballerina, a prince or a pirate is how young children begin to explore the more extreme roles they see in movies and books.
6. Magic shoes
Shoes are often the first dress up accessory kids fall for because they’re so easy to take on an off. Like wielding a sparkly wand, shoes with a special bow or buckle are asking to be imbued with magical powers. As it turns out, mom’s high heels are the most magical of all.
5. Medieval afternoons
With valiant knights, jesters, kings and queens, it’s no wonder fun kids dress up games often gravitate to medieval settings. Throw in a few play swords and crowns and any tree house or couch fort instantly transforms into a bustling castle. The royal family may be busy preparing for a ball or outside the walls readying to storm the castle and steal back the jewels.
Pretending to be a superhero gives kids a taste of mighty power. They can make up their own masked crusader or become their own version of the hulk. It’s the story lines they invent that keeps them physically active and mentally engaged.
3. I’m an animal, no a bug, no a butterfly
Imitation is an effective, physical way for young children to learn. They mimic parents to develop language skills and to build social skills. It’s natural for them to meow like a cat or fly like a bird. Wearing a beak or playful fabric wings encourages these skills. Pretending to be an animal is one of the fun dress up games kids love because they get to transform themselves into a bundle of endless movement and sound.
2. Doctor’s visit
Your kids may not thrill at the news of visiting the real doctor, especially if shots are involved, but the make believe doctor’s office is always one of the best fun kids dress up games. Use an old white button down shirt and paper hat for the uniform and household props like popsicle sticks. Of course, you’ll have to be the patient, so don’t be late for your appointment!
1. When I grow up
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Imagining themselves as pilots, fire fighters, teachers or chefs shows they’re beginning to understand social roles and how communities work. Don’t worry. It doesn’t take fire hoses or kid-sized planes to support this type of pretend. A fire fighting tee shirt or basket of plastic food adds fodder for their imagination.
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