The Power of Imagination

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I remember the exact day. I was 8 and I came home with an assignment to build a trap to catch a leprechaun. My mom helped me brainstorm and we set out to make the best trap. She told me there were no crazy ideas, and encouraged me to make it what I imagined. I went to bed that night with anticipation, that in the morning there would be tiny little green leprechaun waiting to be my friend, I also went to bed with something even greater, an imagination.

Although I didn’t catch a little greenie, I did see evidence that he had been to my house, complete with green glitter, some candy wrappers and evidence of a green tinkle in the potty. And that day my imagination grew. My mind was opened up to possibilities far greater than a leprechaun.

In 3rd grade our entire classroom was transformed before St. Patrick’s Day, complete with traps made by each student. Our hope was to come in after the weekend and each have a little green guy stuck in our traps. My mind recalls the magic we saw as we entered the room on Monday. Rainbows dawned the room and little pot of gold candy by each trap with a note that said, “Better Luck Next Time”. No leprechaun’s were captured, but the power that was created in my mind that day has never left me.

I see imagination everyday with my 3 year old son. He is not bound by what is impossible but his imagination focuses on the possibilities. A clothes hanger becomes a bow, his finger tips spray out webs, the Finding Dory blanket becomes an ocean that he swims on and the 2 foot decorative wooden letter B becomes a track for his trains. His imagination is amazing.

Imagination needs to be encouraged. Research studies have shown that using imaginative play is a vital component in the development of a child (Psychology Today 2012). So we need to encourage it in our children. Translated that means we need to use our imagination and teach them to use theirs.

So Moms, we need to put down our phones, and imagine with our children. We need to turn off the TV and the video games and help them imagine the possibilities. This may not be comfortable at first, and it may take some time to learn how to use our own imaginations. We do so much for our children, enroll them in the best preschools, teach them social skills in play groups, take them to church to learn morals and religious lessons, yet one of the most simple things we can teach out children is at the tip of our brains and we often forget about it. Helping your child unleash their imagination is a gift that you can give your child.

Whether is be St. Patrick’s Day, and a leprechaun, a loose tooth and the Tooth Fairy or a Fairy Door in your little girls bedroom, tap into their imagination – and yours.

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Hey local mommas! I grew up in Centerville, but I now live in Wilmington with my husband Tony. Together we have 6 kids, Joe, and his wife Allison, Austin, and his wife Hannah, Sydney and her husband Hayden, Andrew and his sweet fiance, Lauren and Max and Eli. Did I mention we are a little nuts starting over with this parenting thing when we are 45+???? My husband and I are both ministers , he is a youth minister and I'm a children's minister and we get to work at the same church. We were both married before and brought our families together in 2010. After a few years of marriage we felt God's leading for us to adopt. We added Max to our family in 2014 and Eli joined us in 2017, our quiver is officially full! Blending our family has been an adventure! Add some ex-spouses and two birth mommas and we have ourselves a crazy crew! Coffee is my love language, I just finished binge watching The Crown and feel a bit fancy now. The beach is my happy place and I long to have my toes in the sand. I love being part of the team at Dayton Mom Collective.

1 COMMENT

  1. I always forget how important it is when my daughter is taking everything out of the cupboards to play with them! Like you said, it would be far easier to just turn on a movie and keep my kitchen clean…but then we would lose the imagination aspect! Thanks for this reminder.

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