I am always amazed at how my child’s brain appears to have come pre-programmed to create a world of make-believe from ordinary surroundings. My two-year-old’s vocabulary is growing by leaps and bounds as is his enunciation. With that I gain a glimpse of how incredibly powerful his imagination is and also how many things I never knew a stick, pillow, box, or whisk (his favorite sword) can become.
There is a lot of animated toddler speak where I still have to ask him to “show me” because oftentimes the context is imaginary and so difficult to ascertain. A typical conversation goes like the one we had yesterday (and I am translating for you). Mr C was walking behind me down the path to our mailbox, carrying a long green pole that is the handle of a rake whose rake part fell off:
- Mr. C (lunging) “pshew, pshew, I got it, mom!”
- Me “what are you shooting?”
- Mr. C (stands up straight, looks up to the sky) “it’s a draaagon”
- Me “we have dragons here? Are you going to protect me?”
- Mr. C “uh-huh… I’ll protect you mom”
- (We make our way to the mailbox and are on our way back now. He stops and sets the pole down in front of him.)
- Mr. C “Mom, this is myyy dragon”
- Me “It is? Is it a nice dragon?”
- Mr. C “Yes, it’s a nice dragon and it’s myyy dragon”
Now that I know what’s going on, I am able to (speaking as and to the dragon) convince him we should walk back to the house and take the dragon to the castle (shed). The dragon snacked on a few rocks and even ate a stick on the way. When we got there he insisted I must come in the castle and become the princess and he is the prince. When I said I had to get dinner from the kitchen (we did eat it outside, though) he whined until I could figure out how to do it in character.
I am in heaven that my son seems to be bursting with creativity and has such an active imagination already. I know it will make reading and learning and life in general all the more fulfilling. I have also found that a little story just seems to do the trick for a child who is so full of energy he doesn’t want to stop for anything (like eating, or using the potty 😉 When the plate of noodles, sauteed chicken pieces and broccoli just isn’t interesting enough turn them into rocks, sticks, and trees ‘Mr. C the Giant’ is happy to crunch them up.
What imaginative worlds does your child create?