Today I’m sharing five reasons to encourage your child’s imagination. I’ve just finished writing the first in a gem adventure series for kids, and I often get asked why I wrote it. For me, having survived real emergencies like a wildfire and medical traumas with my family, I’m all for a great story with a good premise. We’ve lived direct application of each of these five reasons.
- Testing boundaries safely
Fantasy provides a safe arena to test boundaries and find out what kids really believe. In a world where things like gravity or flowers don’t operate the same as ours, kids can ignite wonder at what’s possible in life. It’s appropriate at a young age to encourage the ability to seek and find out that dreams are possible.
- Explaining hard ideas with word pictures
Great fantasy can help explain fantastic concepts in word pictures that bring encouragement. Think of Aslan from The Narnia Chronicles teaching about courage and character, or others that encourage strong role models. Introducing ideas like hope and intrinsic value can occur if the story is crafted with adventure and layers in meaning, like a Dagwood sandwich with yummy ingredients in between.
- Preparing them for difficulties
When a character they care about encounters a slice of real-life adversity, kids can cue into their life-lessons hopefully before they are bullied in school or hit by some trial. My kids had to imagine what was possible in life when we lost our home and someone was in the hospital. It kept the thread of hope alive when life was in the balance and taught them to look for what’s really got meaning in life.
- Developing a common framework for discussion
When my five-year-old son was badly bullied at school he didn’t have all the words to discuss what was happening. We used many resources to help him have perspective, but to this day when he sees characters react well in tricky situations, we can reinforce important lessons through key scenes in books.
- Replacing tearing-down with deepest meaning
In real life, there will be plenty of voices telling kids they aren’t worthwhile. But fiction and fantasy with the best value can build up and support kids’ eternal value. By countering what the world may be telling him or her, kids can be more resilient in their every-day life and trials of puberty garnering lessons from characters.
As a gem specialist, and resilience expert, I’ve created stories that bring together whimsy, wit, and sparkle. Each one has a key lesson to help them not just survive puberty, but be ready to embark on their path to reach for the best in life. Hope you’ll join me on the path and become a fan by joining this page for more tips to Live a Resilient Life™ at www.ElizabethVanTassel.com.