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Dressing Up

Dressing Up Dad

Some Social Skills Linked to Creative Play

  • turn taking

  • sharing space and resources

  • experimenting with style

  • self-esteem and confidence building

  • social skills: cooperating to play a game

  • enjoyment

  • an opportunity to act in different roles and explore different perspectives

  • an opportunity to make sense of the world

  • exploring fears in a safe environment

  • learning to accept differences

A barefoot baby girl _shopping_ for groc

  • A variety of shoes: Kids love walking around in mum or dads shoes.

  • Old adult clothing: shawls, necklaces, glasses, skirts provide an opportunity to experiment in role play.

  • Fairy costumes: pretend wings, tutus, fairy dust, letters from fairies, fairy trails in the garden.

  • Police: a pretend car can easily be made out of a box with straps over the arms. Your child could paint it, you could help add a number plate and signage. If they have handcuffs and a gun, be prepared to be arrested.

  • Making a restaurant:  plastic plates and cutlery, pretend food, a menu. This is a great way of adding literacy to a play setting, especially in the words on the menu match the words on the food.

For more Creative Ideas go to the following links:

Regardless of age, dressing up allows for all of us to act in a different role to the one we usually have.

Even as adults costume parties provide a great way to break the ice between people who may not know one another.

But as children, we loved it. And although there are many ready made costumes available (like the child below is wearing) improvisation can also be just as readily accepted by children.

Caucasian boy kid dress up to fireman an

Dress Ups and Creative Play Ideas

  • Pirates: build a pretend pirate ship in the back yard. All you need is a sail (a sheet hanging from clothes line,) a steering wheel (hoola hoop,) a pirate patch over one eye and a rolled up newspaper for a sword.

  • Fireman: A fireman hat, a piece of hose. If you have small chairs make a fire engine for your child to sit in. a plastic plate will do for the steering wheel.

  • Super heroes: Often all a super hero needs is a cape (Although you need to be aware that anything that ties around the neck can pose a safety hazard.)

  • Shops: Some form of cash register, fake money, items to sell: This can be a great way of increasing you child's understanding of literacy and numeracy. Simple: Your child can pay for food with the correct number of taps on your hand. Complex: You can write a shopping list and children find the items with the same labeling, then pay the appropriate amount using money with numerals on them.

Princess Dad

Best Parenting is a high quality parenting website designed with child and family success in mind. It highlights what successful parents do differently to those who struggle. Best Parenting provides free online resources for busy parents who want the best practical advice on: how to give kids a best start in life, better tips for parenting toddlers, effective child rearing strategies, behaviour management tips, successful goal setting and organizational strategies for successful families, easy family dinner recipes, self-care tips for time-poor parents and free kids learning games. The aim of Best Parenting is to provide quality practical parenting tips and advice to best help children and families succeed, using the convenience of a website.

This website provides examples of what worked for me over decades and you are welcome to use these ideas as you see fit but you do so at your own risk. Best Parenting does not provide any guarantee that this information will work in every circumstance with every family or with every child. It is your responsibility as a user of this website to ensure that you adhere to any recommended safety suggestions either implicit or explicit on this site and supervise your children while playing any games suggested. Similarly users of this website are advised to follow any recommendations for seeking professional advice as all information on this site is generic. Best Parenting is an independent website and is not affiliated with any other groups, clubs, religious organizations or educational systems.


Best parenting takes time. The best parenting advice ever is simple: Do your best, don't give up and love your children, no matter what.

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