A world of pure imaginationPosted: 27/11/2013
I am already incredibly over excited about Christmas. The decorations came down from the loft at the weekend and I am barely restraining myself from getting a tree up in the living room (helped by The Husband who has flat-out refused to assist in any festive fun until December!)
In the meantime, I’ve been plotting some Christmas activities for ToddlerGirl and me and working on an activity advent calendar. I have a lovely hanging Christmas tree advent calendar that my Mum gave me years ago, which has pockets for treats. The plan is to use this for our advent activity cards – but I may need to rethink, as ToddlerGirl has claimed it for her own!
As soon as she saw it, she loved it and it became ‘her’ Christmas tree. She knows nothing of advent calenders at the moment but this hasn’t stopped her incorporating it into her play, in a way that I find both fascinating and wonderful.
So far, it has been a mat to lay on the floor and snuggle down on like a bed; a rather festive picnic blanket to be rolled up and spread out with plates, cups and play food; a community sleeping bag for her little Happyland figures; and, perhaps my favourite, a hopscotch. Where she has learnt about hopscotch I have no idea!
So much fun from one item, an item that isn’t actually even a toy. It’s got me marvelling at the transforming power of our imaginations and how children in particular have such a great power to turn even the simplest of items into objects of play. This is definitely something I want to nuture in ToddlerGirl. I am in good company in valuing our ability to imagine so highly; Albert Einstein apparently believed that “Imagination is more important than knowledge. For knowledge is limited to all we now know and understand while imagination embraces the entire world…” (and beyond, I would add.) Clever chap, that Einstein.
Watching ToddlerGirl playing has also made me stop and think carefully about what Christmas presents we will buy her this year. I was already trying to limit these to a simple stocking, one main present and an art box for all the crafty activities we do at home. I’ve been tempted to stray beyond this by all the eye catching toys I’ve seen (my Mum always says I am a marketer’s dream!) but I realise again that ToddlerGirl doesn’t need any of it really. There is a pleasure in gift giving but I shall be reining myself in to concentrate on a few items, all of which will focus on allowing open ended play and investigation. It’s been a timely reminder for me!
As for the advent calendar, I may have lost that one, for this week at least. I overheard ToddlerGirl telling her daddy earnestly that the Christmas tree is “actualleee Mummy’s – but she has given it to me when I was a baby”. I’m not sure I have the heart to disagree with such innocent certainty!