Whether walking through a toy store, browsing online, or visiting a friend, chances are your daughter is drawn to the dolls she sees.
Why is this? What is it about dolls that appeal so many children, especially girls?
When you buy your child a doll, you're not just buying her a beloved companion – you're also giving her the chance to develop some crucial skills as she plays.
Playing with Dolls Is Crucial to Development
When a little girl, or a little boy for that matter, plays with a doll, it develops their imagination and emotional empathy. Role-playing with dolls will teach different emotions and help a child connect with people in different emotional states. A girl learns to be gentle and caring as she plays with a doll.
During imaginative play, especially with other people, girls who play with dolls develop a stronger vocabulary. They talk about things that they normally would not talk about in day-to-day life. Young girls can also learn concepts, such as emotions and feelings or the idea of warm and cold, by role-playing with dolls.
Yet vocabulary and imagination are just one aspect of development that is helped by playing with dolls. Taking clothes on and off helps them develop fine motor skills. Dolls are a great way to help older girls learn how to care for their own hair by caring for the hair on their doll. This is also a great way for you to get involved. Show her how she should brush her own hair and how teach her how to gently remove tangles by practicing on her doll.
Dolls give you something you can use to teach life skills through play with your child. Is your daughter having trouble learning to put on her socks or stockings? Have her practice on her favorite doll. Does she need to learn to zip or button her clothes? Use a doll to practice!
From feeding behaviors to potty training to interacting with peers when she gets older, a doll is a great tool for role-play practice in a safe environment.
Why Girls Are Drawn to Dolls & How They Grow With Them
Many girls are naturally drawn to dolls. There is just something about a cuddly doll with beautiful eyes, hair and clothes that brings out the mothering instinct in a young girl. Dolls are also toys that can grow with your girl.
A toddler can play with baby dolls and practice feeding, diapering and caring for a doll, just as her mother does with her. Older girls can transition into dolls that mirror them; with hair and clothes they can enjoy changing. Teenagers can begin to get interested in collectible dolls. All along the way, girls are learning
A doll is irresistible to a child's imagination because of the potential.
The doll can become anything the young girl wants her to be. Perhaps she wants her to grow be a dancer, a ballerina, an equestrian. A few changes of hairstyle and dress, and that is what she becomes. Maybe your daughter envisions her doll as a horse ridin’ Cowgirl. Again, with the right accessories and a trusty steed, that's exactly what she’ll become.
Dolls give girls the chance to explore their own imagination, in the safety of their own rooms.
Yes, a doll is more than just another toy to sit on a shelf. When chosen carefully, a doll becomes a valued treasure, and often one that is passed down from generation to generation. By giving the gift of a doll, you are giving the gifts of hours of imaginative play and a lifetime of memories.
We hope you’ve enjoyed our take on the importance of doll play and how they help development! How have you or your children benefited from playing with dolls? We’d love to hear your story in the comments below!