While I was visiting with a mom today, her 4 year-old daughter was creating a pretend world with her blocks. The blocks had many different shapes, but were the traditional natural wood blocks, without painted villages or people on them. Some might think these blocks are a bit boring by today’s standard of toys. 

Mom picked up on of the bigger blocks and started to talk about the clever preschool teacher her daughter has. She said the teacher glued a picture of each of the children in the class onto the large blocks for play. Now the kids gather, take up their picture block and have conversations at the block area. This clever teacher has added conversation and encouraging language to a typically quieter activity.

Make sure you add people or animals or figures who can talk to your child’s pretend play scenarios. Children hone their conversational skills and social language through play.