Small world play involves acting out scenarios (scenes from real life, stories and/or imagination) in a miniature play scene, created with small figures and objects. Anything from your own home or garden will do, there is no limitation to your creativity which is why it’s a truly inexhaustible subject!
Small worlds are often set up in a certain theme (construction area, pirates at sea, dinosaur world, … you name it) that are relevant and meaningful to the child at the time and they usually include a sensory element (water, sand, dry pasta, leaves, …) which adds more layers to the play. As with any kind of play, there are numerous ways in which small world play supports your child in it’s development. By providing children with opportunities to re-enact certain experiences, you are helping then to reflect on feelings and events in life in a safe way.
While engaged in small world play, children can explore and experiment with different emotions and act out these scenes in their play. Small world play invites children to be creative, and boosts confidence when children are able to experiment with different (both new and familiar) materials and build something they think is awesome. As part of Dr. Seuss theme, we read a book called Yertle the Tertle. This book visits the pond of Sal-a-ma-sond and Yertle the Turtle, who lives there. Throughout the story, the residents of Sal-a-ma-sond make a pile, one on top of another. With this small world play, we recreated these piles with some toy turtles. Students also reenacted parts of the story. All in all, it was fun to create our very own ponds and play with our turtles!