Is your preschool-aged child interested in the daily activities you do? Have you ever had the experience of setting your child down with some toys to keep him busy while you do the dishes, only to find he’s more interested in helping you than playing? Does your child surprise you with his ability to accomplish tasks you thought were too difficult for him to do?
From the moment they are born, children are striving toward maturity. Everything they do is designed to develop the person they will one day grow up to be. While playing with other children and adults, and interacting with objects in their environment, children discover important aspects about getting along with others and how things work. Given the opportunity, children want to engage in meaningful activities that impact their environment.
Often, as parents, we believe our children just want to play. And yet, on some level, we also know they want to do “grown-up” tasks. So we buy them play kitchen sets with plastic pots and pans, and toy iron boards and pretend irons. We let them “wash” the dishes while they play in the bathtub. We give them plastic hand tools so they can pretend to build like Daddy.