Imaginative Play with Props
Encourage children to use simple props in their pretend play. Plan an area where you keep these objects for imaginative play and easily accessible. Here are a few ideas for items to place in costume or prop boxes.
A ribbon or scarf can become anything from a sash to an elephant trunk. Ask the children to swish it up and down, back and forth. The ribbon becomes an extension of the child's own imagination.
Help children to make hats. Fold newspapers into hats and trim with paper or real feathers and other decorations. You can also coat sheets of newspaper with wallpaper paste and then mold several layers around a bowl. Let this dry, trim the brim, and voila you have a hat for the children to decorate and wear.
Think about dress-up clothing for acting out the 'mommy and daddy' scene or community helpers. Ask for donations from community helpers to add to your collection. Old Halloween costumes are great assets for pretend play. Don't forget about sunglasses for the movie star look. Wigs and fabric hats are frowned upon due to the fact that head lice can be spread from one child to the next. Make sure all clothing can be washed and sanitized.
Other props can include puppets, stuffed animals, play foods, cooking utensils, and musical instruments.