Homeschooling · Preschool

This Week in Preschool: The Name of the Game was Imagination!

I grew up ‘playing house’, playing with my dolls, and otherwise engaging my imagination through pretend play, but I wouldn’t say I’m all that imaginative of a person, really.  So how is it that I have a preschooler who is?  Let me show you what activities I planned for Carmen this week, and then let me show you how she tweaked them to add a touch of imagination. 🙂

I wrote letters on a dry erase board, then called out their names and she found them and erased them with a pom-pom.  I’d done this one before and she loved it, but this time it must’ve seemed boring to her, because she soon said she didn’t want to do it anymore and just had fun making up her own drawings.

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See these  tp rolls wrapped with pretty colored paper and arranged in rainbow order?  Well, the idea was to sort  popsicle sticks by color, but she didn’t get very far before she started arranging them into something else.  When I asked her what she was making, she said, “It’s a schedule.” (!)  Interesting take on time management, don’t you think? 🙂


And here is one I tried with her earlier and she wasn’t interested.  I placed pony beads on the top row of boxes, and then she placed the same colors in order on the bottom row.  This time she did enjoy it, one time through.  When I asked if she’d like to do it again, she said she’d rather sprinkle them on her ‘cake’.  Then she stirred and chopped and made all kinds of other delicious treats.




I thought she might like to pin buttons on to styrofoam with these push pins, but she quickly found a more interesting way to use them.  She did poke all the pins in, but then she made a ring of buttons around the outside.  She was so pleased with it!


Since my imagination isn’t this active, I tend to want to see activities like these through to the end, the way they are ‘supposed’ to be done.   If I had planned all these activities for my firstborn, she would’ve eagerly accomplished them as planned, because she’s much more task-oriented like me.  I’m thankful for Carmen’s active imagination.  It’s entertaining for her mother 🙂 and just a reminder to lighten up and enjoy life!

This last picture is one of Carmen painting with water colors.  It’s one of her favorite things to do.  Makes sense, doesn’t it?


I’d love to know how many of you have preschoolers with active imaginations.  Or are yours task oriented and like to see well-planned activities through to the end?

To view my other preschool posts, click here.


12 thoughts on “This Week in Preschool: The Name of the Game was Imagination!

  1. Lovely! I love rainbow colours. My daughter is the spirited, spontaneous one. I’m more structured and organized so it gets to me at times when she doesn’t do things according to plan. But spending time with her has taught me to let it go and move with the flow. A constant reminder that I can’t be in control of everything! That’s a lesson homeschooling has taught me.

    1. Thanks for stopping by and sharing your thoughts! I’m with you on wanting things to go according to plan. Homeschoooling, and mothering in general, I believe, are very effective means of ‘stretching’ us, aren’t they?!

  2. Rachel! I am SO with you on this one! My oldest preschooler is very creative (the antithesis of me!). Today we were doing patterns and she was turning the link blocks into “fingernails”! Haha! So glad that you have such a positive and patient attitude with your cutie, I look to your example!

  3. Ryleigh has always had an active imagination, but just recently it has exploded in our worlds! She always has her own way of doing things, which is why I never try to plan too much or try to restrict her to one way of doing things. She flies through activities that I thought might challenge her, and is finding interest in things I never dreamed she would enjoy! She has always been into art, but I bought her some watercolors for her birthday this week and they were gon in two days! We had to buy her some more, but the real adventure is seeing how hard she concentrates and the myriad of strokes and colors that she uses. It is amazing just watching her! I cannot even imagine what a blessing it is to have seen it five times now!

  4. I love the making a schedule a comment! I’ve had my little ones tell me they are “making a list”, “making a schedule”, and “writing down calories”! That’s really bad (!!!) and I can’t remember ever saying the calorie one! It was four years ago, so hopefully everyone has forgotten about that!! We made pony bead sun catchers today! Lots of pony beads going around! 😉

  5. I love this! I am like Carmen, very visual…very imaginative! I have a daughter who is very organized and technical. She is amazing and I admire her talents of organization. She likes everything in order… everything in a straight row…pillows on the couch can not be random with her, they have to be 2 and 2…I much prefer 3 and 1. She loves the technical things…like in music …she loved learning theory…I just want to play the instrument. I don’t care about the theory behind it. One time in 3rd grade I had a teacher who understood me. She let me paint and do watercolors and be creative like you did with Carmen. I did not have to color in the lines. Obviously I still remember it. You are blessing your daughter by letting her be creative. That’s the beauty of homeschooling and a parent who is aware of the different gifts each child has.

    One of my sons excelled in playing the violin by ear. He wanted to learn to read music and he tried and even auditioned and joined a youth orchestra. The conductor told him he would have to read music in order to play. He tried, but had such an ear for music that he would hear it one time and then just play it. He would act like he was reading the music, but he knew it by heart.

    I wish I had spent more time learning the special gifts of my children and helping them excel in who they are. I know for a fact that they learn much more when they are interested. We all do. I think you are really on to something here. Instead of getting frustrated because your daughter isn’t doing everything exactly to the T, you’ve let her be free to learn in her own way. I’m so impressed!

    1. After the first few of this week’s activities didn’t go as planned, I started to feel a bit exasperated. But then I told myself she is just 3, and there’s no pressure to meet some arbitrary standard. It was when I stepped back and let her do her thing that I began to realize how creative she is and what joy there is in that! Thank you so much for affirming that approach and for your words of wisdom here!

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