Create a zoo in the living room or dramatic play area. Place kitchen chairs around for cages, pillows for “rocks” or ponds, and plastic food (or real snacks). If there are stairs available make them one of the cages or have furniture the child can climb on. Add balls for the monkeys to play with in their cage.
Read a book about the zoo, such as Dear Zoo, by Rod Campbell. Pretend to be different animals. Move around the zoo. Add animals to your zoo, based on what the child wants. The adult wants to see the bird house. Pretend to be birds and stand on your toes. Pretend to be a stork or a flamingo and stand on one foot.
The child now has the strength and flexibility in the feet and ankles to be able to balance on his toes to stand and walk briefly.
Although some tolerance for disorder is needed, tables, chairs, couches, pillows, and blankets make for some of the best dramatic play props. Children at this level are starting to enjoy dramatic play, and when early childhood educators and parents participate in the play, they can supervise as well as suggest acceptable actions and alternatives.
North Carolina Department of Public Instruction, 2015
©2015 by the North Carolina Department of Public Instruction. This work is licensed under the Creative Commons Attribution-NonCommercial-ShareAlike 4.0 International License. To view a copy of this license, visit https://creativecommons.org/licenses/by-nc-sa/4.0/.