Авторы: Юлия Корепанова, Марианна Большакова
​​​​​​​Основатели и преподаватели английской online-гимназии Smilenglish

Why and how to play role-playing games with children 3-7 years old

Children-preschoolers must necessarily play daily role-playing and role-play games (the difference between these two concepts is well written here).

A role-playing game is like a "recipe", only not for teaching letters, but for teaching effective communication. Agree, if the child had a sufficient practice with the words, he then will write beautifully in the clean lines. So do role games. If the child has had a sufficient practice of role-playing games, then:

• the child will be able to easily figure out what to do with himself,

• the child will be easier at school lessons: he will be happy to participate in the dramatics in literature, English, team games,

• the child will be easy to make friends and have teachers for him,

• role plays will also reduce the likelihood of internal protests about learning,

• role-playing games will form interests for school subjects and for the future profession.

Tells mom of 3.5 years old child: "I work as a tutor, and my students come to my house. My daughter is 3.5 years old. Before the lesson, I just lay out my favorite toys in front of my daughter, I give the assignment "to play while mother works", and I leave. My daughter can play for 1 hour alone. What does she do? It plays into what we have played with it more than once: collects puzzles, colorizes pictures, draws, loses on the dolls the stories of our role-playing games. Yesterday, for example, I go to her room after class, and she sat down the toys on the couch and sits as if reading to them. I learned this story - it’s from our game in "Kindergarten". My daughter now likes this game most of all. "

The teacher of the English language in elementary school tells: "This is my first year of work, and I’m surprised that only 4-5 children out of 25 are delighted with" staging ". I come up with games where children need to address each other in different ways, and only this small group of children with pleasure and very artistically do it. The rest, it seems, do not understand what it’s like to "get acquainted in English like a bear". They can copy a bear growl, but at least a few seconds to depict a bear they can not bear. As a result, I seem to subconsciously build a lesson for those artistic 4-5 children. Working with them is easy, interesting and the impact is strong. "

So, if you want to raise a child not only smart, but also successful, interesting, sociable person, provide your child before school a good practice role-playing game.

How to organize this good practice?

For different categories of families, the recommendations will be different. If a child goes to a kindergarten or a nanny sits with him, then it will be enough for parents to choose the best teacher-educator for the child. Professional teachers and tutors are well aware of the potential of role-playing games, they are able to organize them correctly and know how to interest children in participation.

If you yourself are educating your preschool children and you do not have a pedagogical education, then here are the tips for you:

1. When do you start playing role-playing games? If the speech of the child has reached the speech therapy standards for years old children, then it’s time to start playing. To get acquainted with these standards, you can click on the following link. If you want to introduce game practice earlier, we recommend you read this article.

2. Which story to choose? Choose what you most likely will respond to your child. Analyze his interests: which topics he clearly likes more than others? What toys does he distinguish among the others? It is also useful to start a conversation on the topic "Who do you want to become?". It’s amazing, but many 4-year-old children quickly answer this question. If your child finds it difficult, look at the books or videos about the professions - if the child is interested in something, this topic will become the subject of your first game.

3. And if my child is not interested in anything? And if I do not have time to find out? Then we recommend to take the universal story "Shop". This is one of the easiest in the organization of the stories.

4. What should I do next? Here you have chosen the plot. Now prepare the props: pick up the toys, stack them together, make or buy something.

5. Do I have to make props for the game or can I go and buy something ready in a toy store? It seems that in the first stages it is better to make something out of improvised means. If the plot "does not go," or your first games will last no more than five minutes, you will not be sorry for the money spent.

To you in the help the approximate list of that it is possible to prepare for game in "Shop":

1. Cash register let at you will be usual calculator or a box from fondant. Wrap the box with white paper, draw a number of buttons on the paper.

2. As money, you can take a real trifle, washed with soap. Also, you can cut the numbers from old wall calendars.

3. Take any plastic card - it will be a bank card.

4. Find some old wallet or take an envelope - it’s the purse of a child.

5. Girls also like to "go shopping" with small handbags.

6. Different departments in the store you can be represented by posters, which are often in the house, for example, such: "Vegetables", "Fruits".

7. Do not forget also that you can use the right "for fun": for example, the seller can give the child "invisible" change, invisible goods - many children like this move very much.

6. Did we not misinterpret? You write that the game can take 5 minutes? I spent 1.5 hours preparing the props! Yes, friends, any educator-educator will confirm to you that this is a normal situation in their profession: preparation for the game sometimes takes 10 times longer than the game itself. Is it worth it then? Definitely worth it! The reasons we voiced at the beginning of the article. By the way, you can offer the child to take part in the preparation: together make a cash register, collect together goods for counters, agree on the rules of the game.

7. I collected the props - can I start the game already? Do not hurry. First you need to go on an excursion. The theme of this tour will be your future role-playing game. Comment on the child everything that meets you on the way, and especially the actions of store employees: "We are buyers. We take the basket and go to choose the goods. The store employee puts the goods on the shelves. The cashier takes the money. The cashier gives the change and the check. "

Why is it important to pay attention to the actions of people? Here is a quote from the book "Children s Psychology" by the Soviet psychologist Daniil Borisovich Elkonin:

"... during the excursion to the zoo children were introduced to animals, their habits, appearance, etc. After the excursion, animals were made into the children’s room, but the role-playing the game did not unfold. In other cases, during the same excursion, the children were introduced to the people who service the zoo, with their functions and relationships - with the cashier and the controller, with the guide, with the servants feeding the animals, with the "bestial doctor", etc. After this excursion, as a rule, a long and interesting role-playing game unfolded ... "Source

Thus, if you want your child to want to play with you, be sure to demonstrate in real life the elements of the future game. Focus on the actions of people.

If you do not have time to go to the store, you can watch with the child a video about how the store works. Stop the video, comment on the activity of people.

8. We were on an excursion! Can I start playing? I spread out the props, I say: "Let’s go play in the store!", And the child does not want to run away. Immediately warn that your game will go all the easier and more interesting for both you and the child if the child has an obvious and sincere desire to play with you. You can gently offer the child: "Who do you want to be: the seller or the buyer?", But you should not insist. If you go to the store for a tour for the second week, and the child does not show any desire to play in the store, we recommend the following:

9. Look for parent forums - how do other moms manage to interest children with role-playing games? Find on youtube channels of parents showing how they play with their children. Show the child a video of how the children play with their moms. If you learn something new every day about the process of organizing games, you will definitely find a recommendation for your situation.

10. We sat down to play, and I found that I did not know what to say. Do I need a script to prescribe? It is not necessary to prescribe, but to estimate approximately in your mind what you ask and what the child can answer - it is necessary. Here is a snippet of dialogue, from which role-playing games can start in the "Store":

Hello! What do you want to buy?

"I want to buy potatoes."

Sorry, no potatoes. But there are apples!

- I have 5 apples, please.

It will be ... rubles.

If you study British English with a child, here is the same dialogue in English:

Hello, Madam / Sir. How can I help you today? - I would like to buy some potatoes today, please.

I’m sorry, we do not have any potatoes. But we do have apples! - I’ll have 5 apples.

That would be ... rubles, please.

More phrases for the role-playing game in the store (in British English) - on the wall in our group Vkontakte

11. And yet how often to play? Children should play every day.

12. How long should I play with the child? Bug can happen only for 5 minutes, and more inside this day you will not be able to play. This is a normal situation. If your child plays longer - fine. Play until he gets bored. If you are a very busy mom, live according to plan, then do the following: select in your schedule, say, 15 minutes, put a timer for this time. Warn the child that when the timer "chokes", Mom will have to go on business. Start playing - you will succeed!

13. Must I play at home? Yes, it is not necessary. You can take out role-playing games on the street. "Sell" can be sticks, pebbles, and leaves are money. In summer, on the asphalt, you can draw "departments" with chalk, draw a cash register and its button numbers with chalk.

14. How do I understand that the game benefits my child and develops it? What to look for, where to look for progress? So, you are on the right track, if:

• the child began to offer you to play a particular game,

• the child remembered the phrases-replicas and no longer repeats you, and himself pronounces them,

• the child uses fragments of your games in independent games with toys,

• the child began to adapt the improvised items for his games,

• the child started using the "make-believe" device.

One more tip: you may find it more convenient to track "game progress" if you get a separate notebook. Name it, for example, so - "Our games". Memorize in the notebook interesting game ideas (found on the Internet, heard from other moms), the progress of the child in speech, in memory, in independent games based on your joint games. You can also shoot videos of your games, then show this video to family and friends. Many children like to watch themselves on video.

Colleagues, we wish you good luck! Interesting games for you with your children!

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