I’M NOT sure if it’s just a phase, but I think my son wants to be a dinosaur.
For a while now our four-year-old has wanted nothing but dinosaurs.
His third birthday party was roar-sum, stuffed dinosaur toys occupy the corner of his room, prehistoric themed puzzles get taken out on an almost daily basis, dino Lego sets are the flavour of the month and he now has a pretty cool triceratops night light (picture above).
If he had the choice, I think he would turn into a dinosaur.
The strange thing is that we never encouraged the passion. Not that we discouraged it, of course, but it’s funny to watch your little person grow up and develop their own interests.
Something must have appealed to him and it just snowballed from there. Maybe it was a book we read to him or something he saw on TV. Either way, it’s pretty cool.
And I must admit, his ability to name the different species is a little, okay a lot, better than mine.
His imagination comes alive when he plays with his dinosaurs – this one stomps, that one is enormous and looks after the little ones. The T-Rex eats everything.
I’ve also seen a green and orange stegosaurus buy a loaf of bread and a box of leaves to eat from a teddy bear’s make-believe convenience store.
Although a lot of the playtime is just that, play, there is also a genuine need to learn about these prehistoric animals.
“This one lived millions and millions of thousands of years ago, mom and dad” is something mentioned quite often during our many dino discussions.
Still being in kindy and knowing the difference between a herbivore and a carnivore and their correct context when describing an animal’s diet also shows just how eager little ones are to take it all in.
One of my son’s favourite books is the well-named ‘The Dinosaurs Book’. It’s beautifully illustrated with pictures of everything from fossils to early mammals and is a trove of information for any kid with the slightest dinosaur fascination.
It’s the perfect book for a child his age – it’s got really cool pictures of lots of different dinosaurs. But it’s almost like a little reference book, so as he grows and wants to learn more facts he can keep the same book. And when he is old enough to read it himself, it will take on a whole new dimension.
The best thing about having a dinosaur fascination is the plethora of different products available to meet the craze.
There are countless puzzles for children of all ages, soft or hard dinosaurs for imaginative play, Lego and Duplo sets that encourage creativity, following instructions and introducing kids to science and technology, picture books, story books and pop-up books, outdoor toys, clothing and bedding.
The list is endless.
There really is something for everyone and if people pick up on your child’s interest, birthdays and holidays are easy when it comes to knowing what to get.
The best thing about your child being interested in something – yes, I’ve read the blogs about what having an interest in dinosaurs supposedly means in terms of intellect – is that it gives you something to talk to your son or daughter about.
You can play together with the toys, read books before bed, spend time making those Lego sets and building puzzles. The quality time is what is the most important.
It doesn’t really matter what the interest is – it’s the memories that come with it that count the most.
This article was originally published on Shaun Ryan Media on 11 October, 2020.
If your child is fascinated by dinosaurs too, the items below could prove to be great stocking fillers for Christmas, birthday presents or just ways to theme the bedroom:
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