Playing with dolls is a normal, natural and important thing for any young child ~ boy or girl ~ to do. It’s also enjoyable and fun!
Pretend play is an important part of cognitive development as children learn about themselves and the world. As children dress, feed, bath and put their doll to bed they learn basic concepts, such as “Baby is in bed” or “Baby is under the blanket”. They learn names of various body parts ~ “Where are baby’s eyes, nose, mouth, ears, hands, or tummy?” They learn about cause and effect ~ “Is baby hungry? We should feed him!” or “Is baby sad? We should comfort him”.
Dressing and feeding dolls helps children develop fine motor and self-helping skills, as children learn to pull on socks, button shirts, zip zippers and practice holding and using spoons, bottles and cups.
Most of all, playing with dolls helps children develop social emotional skills. Children use play to understand their world. As they play with dolls, children practicing nurturing and caring. In carrying, holding, feeding and rocking a doll, children learn to be loving to others. They learn to express feelings, and love openly and honestly.
Both girls and boys will take an active role in caring for their babies and raising children. Playing with dolls will help them become confident, loving and nurturing mothers, fathers, aunts, uncles, big sisters or brothers, friends or partners!