In a world of cutthroat academia, sometimes it’s easy to forget just how important imaginative play really is. Those toys and products that foster this type of learning are so valuable. It helps them develop problem-solving skills and interpersonal skills among many others. Not to mention, there is nothing more endearing than watching children let their wonderful imaginations come to life. And let’s be honest, we’d provide anything to foster this type of learning!
We’ve gathered our favorite, true and tested BEST imaginative play toys just for YOU! Do you have any you’d add to this list?
Tried and Tested Imaginative Play Toys We Love
There are lots of play kitchens out there. Some are more beautiful but cost you an arm and a leg, and some are cheap but unrealistic and dare I say, ugly! We love this KidKraft Vintage Kitchen! It’s a best seller each year and a staple in imaginative play. It comes in a variety of colors too! Kids have been playing”house” for years, and it’s not going to change. Oh, and don’t forget the fake food and pots and pans to go with it!
Picture Source: Vanessa at Sunflower State of Mind
If you’re looking for a reasonably priced, quality dollhouse that will stand the test of time, we love these sets. They will foster HOURS of play. Plus, I adore the details of each. They come with some furniture, and you can always add to that collection separately. You can check them out in detail via THIS post.
Another classic, kids can spend HOURS putting on shows and telling wonderful stories. Using puppets and role-playing are excellent for motor skills, hand-eye coordination, communication skills, self-confidence, and parent-child bonding. These are a highly rated brand and set which are a valuable addition to any playroom. Shakespeare won’t have anything on your littles! Plus they’ll fit adult OR child hands so you can be sure to get in on the fun!
There are about a gazillion options for dress up, and every kid seems to love dressing up! A common issue with dress up is quality. Without fail, after one wearing, a princess dress or cowboy vest is ripped or fraying from cheap construction. These sets are more likely to be able to withstand the constant taking on and off from little people. Plus, they have everything from a policeman to a princess fitting each child’s interests and imaginations!
Listen, I have no idea what it is about cleaning the floors, but every one of my 5 kids has been fascinated with the mop/broom at some point. Still, to this day, my younger elementary age kiddos beg to sweep. WHAT? If only this fascination lasted until their teenage years! This set is just their size and lets them use their imagination while learning responsibility! Plus, you get your floor swept for free! Win. Win.
Learn math skills while playing store! There’s a reason this toy has over 1100 positive reviews. It’s awesome. It has a working calculator in the register so kiddos can use it to learn math while having fun. Play money is included in this set. I used it with my older kids to explain how to count money.
These animal figurines are so realistic! They have become an obsession of my children. They want to collect them ALL! From baby polar bears to bald eagles to farm animals, these are a GREAT toy to collect. They are great quality and very detailed. We received this barn last year, and it’s awesome. My 2-year-old and 7-year-old play together forever just bringing cattle in and out of that barn!
The “forts” of 2016, every kiddo needs a teepee! These have provided hours of imaginative play and fun. My kids read in them, play in them, and inevitably end up playing “Indians and cowboys”. Not to mention, they are super cute!
These are like the iconic toy soldiers but in SPORTS form. Your little sports lover will love setting these guys up and making plays! What a great way to use their imagination and learn a sport! These are engaging and allow kiddos to really get creative and strategic. They also have basketball and hockey guys!