Wednesday, July 27, 2011

Playing With Dolls

I have never enjoyed playing with dolls—not barbies with my best friend, not babies with the girl down the street, not army guys with my brother, and now I am having a really hard time playing robots with my son. They are all just dolls to me, and they are all completely boring.

 I would agree about all of the benefits I have heard can be gained from playing with dolls. It is a great opportunity to develop language skills, practice dialogue, enact various roles that you cannot fill in your real life, socialize with others in roles they normally don't fill, be imaginative and creative, practice real life skills, process difficult situations and experiences, exert complete control over a setting and the characters in it, and just have fun. But personally, I would rather act things out with my own body than with a figure. Nevertheless, I love imaginative play and my son is really into playing robots right now. There are good guys & gals and bad guys & gals and epic sagas of the ongoing struggle between the forces of good and evil. This is great stuff... in theory. In practice though, it still feels like a chore.

But today the value of this type of play really sunk in for me. While rehashing a part of the LEGO: Hero Factory movie, a really empowering statement was reinforced. There is a point in the movie when the Hero Team is getting discouraged and the team leader says to them “Always remember who you really are.” And they eagerly reply, “Heroes to the core!”. After repeating this exchange several times, I made my robot say the leader's words to my son. His reply, to my delight, was “ME to the core!”. Now that is a scenario I don't mind repeating ad nauseum. If playing with dolls can help reinforce the importance of staying true to yourself, especially in the midst of difficult times, I can enjoy that.

No comments:

Post a Comment