Does your child absolutely love teddy bears and soft toys?
Are you forever finding them all over the house?
Do you wish your child could ‘play’ with them more?
My daughter has an abundance of teddy bears and soft toys, she absolutely loves them!
But I’m never quite sure what to do with them… I mean they are cuddly, but they don’t get played with all that much
If that’s you too, then it’s time to encourage imaginative play activities with these 8 Teddy Bear Pretend Play ideas for toddlers that you can use those teddies for and have a blast stretching your child’s imagination with these teddy bear activities for toddlers!
1. Teddy Bear Pretend Play Activity Ideas for Doctors, Nurses, Dentists & Opticians
Kids love to play doctors and nurses – it’s a great way to encourage your child’s caring nature
- Doctors set – If you have a toy doctors set then you can get this out and run a pretend surgery
- Waiting area – Kids chairs or the bed could be used to create a doctors waiting area
- Patient bed – A play bed or a blanket could be used for patients who require treatment
- Opticians – You could do some pretend eye tests and have some pretend glasses
- Dentist – Why not inspect teeth (if your teddy bears have any!) You could use this as an opportunity to talk about how important it is to look after our teeth and have some unused brushes to use on your soft toys
These are great teddy bear activities for early years children and are perfect for pretend play at home
2. Teddy Bear Imaginative Play Activities Tea Party or Picnic
Who doesn’t love a classic teddy bear’s picnic – here are some different ideas for this much loved activity:
- Princess Tea Party – If you have a lot of princesses this is a great excuse to throw a little tea party! Have dolls sit around in a circle or around a child’s table if you have one and bring out a toy tea set – maybe even bring out some real biscuits for a treat!
- Outdoor Picnic – This is a great way to get children outside – get a large blanket and make a picnic area in the garden – bring as many teddy’s as you can and some play food to serve (having it outside is also a great way to keep the clean up to a minimum!)
- Snack time – The best way to do this activity is to incorporate it with your toddler’s snack time! If you have friends join in too then you can talk about sharing food
- Cake making – You could spend some time preparing with your toddler by doing some baking to share at the special picnic later on
This is one of those classic teddy bear activities for toddlers and preschoolers that can be reinvigorated with a bit of a twist (I mean sometimes you need to keep the grown ups interested too!!)
3. Teddy Bear Pretend Play Vet Activity
If you have a pet in your house then your child will have some idea of how to care for animals – this activity is a great way to learn about what it takes to look after animals and have a go without any commitments!
- Pet Carriers – Find a box or something that resembles a pet carrier (a small washing basket could work!) And ‘carry’ sick animals to the vets
- Bandages – Wrapping up teddies in bandages is a lot of fun! You could either use bandages from your first aid box or some fabric scraps or tissues – anything you have in the home already
- X-rays – For children that are a little bit older it might be fun to get some black card and use a chalk pen and draw some pretend x-rays of the animal (for younger children you could have a go at making some as a prop)
These activities are popular dramatic play ideas for toddlers and preschoolers who love animals – it’s also a great opportunity to learn about caring for animals
4. Teddy Bear Imaginative Play for toddlers Story Time
Reading stories is a great way to open up your child’s imagination – and the use of teddy bears as a way to act out stories in a dramatic way is so much fun for little ones! Here are some stories that lend themselves really well to this:
- The Tiger Who Came to Tea – Judith Kerr
There are only a handful of characters in this story making it really easy to recreate – all you need is a tiger (or a similar animal!) a girl and a mother – the beauty of this is you can go with whatever works for you, so if the mother is Jesse from Toy story and the little girl is a penguin then that is just fine!!
- The Gruffalo – Julia Donaldson
This would be a great activity to do outside. Get a collection of animals that appear in the story and take a walk around the garden acting out the story together
- Dear Zoo – Rod Campbell
You could find some boxes or something to wrap up each animal in the story and take it in turns to unwrap each animal! Check out this post for even more Dear Zoo Activities
For lots more ideas on how to bring stories to life take a look at this post on ideas for a Creative Storytime
This is another great opportunity to use teddy bear activities for early years pretend play at home with little ones and just to have a lot of fun bringing stories to life!
5. Teddy Bear Activities For Toddlers Who love to Play Babies
If you don’t have baby dolls to play with then use your teddies to show children how to look after babies or younger children
- Nappies – If you can get hold of a pretend nappy or some tiny nappies this is a really fun activity trying to out nappies on the teddies 🙂 Or have a go with reusable nappies if you have some
- Bottles / Food – You could use baby bottles to show how to feed the babies or talk about breastfeeding or different types of foods that animals might eat
- Bed/Cot – If you have a toy bed or cot then great but if not a box with a small blanket or even a tray with some cushions would work just as well!
This would be a great activity if you are expecting a new baby in the family – using these imaginative play activities with your little ones will help ease the transition or just make a fun playtime 🙂
6. Teddy Bear Pretend Play At The Shops
Shopping is very popular in pretend play so why not extend this activity to include a whole host of teddy bear customers, shop keepers and cashiers with some pretend money
- Bakery – If you have a toy kitchen or a table that can be adapted to a make-shift bakery, you could make paper hats for the bakers and use pretend bread and cakes (or real if you want!) and create a baker’s shop
- Supermarket – If you’ve got a toy trolley or any kind of basket you could set up a supermarket with empty boxes of cereal or small tins of unopened goods from your kitchen lined up on a small shelf. have Panda set up at a pretend till and away you go!
- Toy shop – This is a brilliant activity to find a new love of old toys! Set up a toy shop with toys that your little one hasn’t played with in a while and see what their teddy wants to buy and play with!
If you would like some free shop printables then head over to this post for some awesome Shop Printables for creating any shop you want!
Pretend play activity ideas don’t need to be anything fancy or complicated – all of the above imaginative play activities can be as simple or as elaborate as you like using what you already have at home
7. Teddy Bear Pretend Play For Toddlers Dress Up
Children love dressing up and playing different characters – but it can get expensive at times. This activity is great because you can use things you already have in your home for some teddy dress up fun!
- Winter Accessories – Wooly hats, scarves, gloves and mittens all make for great toddy bear outfits! Why not dress your teddy up for a trip to the North Pole and for extra measures wrap teddy in a blanket coat!
- Sunny Days – Sunglasses, baseball caps, sun hats and flip flops are great for getting teddy ready for a day out in the sun – whether that’s to the beach or just in your back garden it’s always good to be properly dressed for the occasion!
- Dress Smart – You could try on ties, bow ties, smart glasses, or maybe you have some baby shoes your little one has outgrown to complete a smarter look ready for atrip to the theatre – you could even put on a show for all your smartly dressed teddies!
We love this imaginative play for toddlers idea because it is so easy to do and much cheaper than dressing up your toddler!
8. Teddy Bear Activities for Early Years - Preschool Play
Whether your child goes to nursery, preschool or stays at home, they will probably have some idea of what a learning environment is and so this is a fun activity to play out in a few different ways..
- Teachers – let your child have a go at leading teddy bears through a lesson – if you have a white board or chalk board or even a piece of paper – let them practice their letters as they teach their teddies!
- Teddy teaching – why not just use the teddies as a resource for counting, sorting or pairing – you could count how many animals their are, you could match teddies together depending on their colour, or you could sort them into large and small – the possibilities for this are endless and you don’t need any extra toys!
As a child I remember playing school with my brother – these are definitely classic pretend play activity ideas that are great to encourage learning through play!
Teddy Bear Activities For Toddlers Recap
So there you have it, 8 Teddy Bear Pretend Play Ideas For Toddlers to get you thinking about how you can use that big collection of teddies and encourage your child in imaginative play activities!
- Create a Pretend Play Doctors, Nurses, Dentists or Opticians for preschool dramatic play
- Have a Tea Party or Picnic in the garden for awesome pretend play at home
- Set up your own Imaginative Play for toddlers Vet Clinic
- Set up dramatic play ideas for toddlers based on a Favourite Story
- Get some dolls out and Play Babies for great teddy bear activities for early years children
- Create your very own Shop and have teddy bear customers!
- Create imaginative play activities easily by Dressing up your teddies with whatever you have to hand
- And finally, set up your own pretend play for toddlers Teddy preschool, a great way to learn through play!
I hope you have fun with these awesome pretend play activity ideas for toddlers and preschoolers at home!
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Louisa | Mum’s Creative Cupboard