I’ve been inspired by all the mirror play I’ve been seeing on some of my favourite Aussie blogs lately.
We’ve had a mirror hung low on the wall of our playroom for a few months now. Studied have shown that when children can see their reflection whilst they are playing, they are better behaved. I’m not sure that it’s working in our case (lol), but it certainly adds another dimension to the girls’ play.
But I’d never really thought about playing directly with mirrors before, until I met Kate from An Everyday Story, who introduced me to the Reggio Emilia parenting approach and their focus on authentic open-ended materials for play, in particular using mirrors in all sorts of play situations.
So when I saw some small mirrors in the local discount shop for $2.50 each, I picked up a couple. I’ve got so many play ideas for them! But we started off with a really simple idea – drawing on mirrors with regular washable markers.
(Before we started, we had a little chat about mirrors, how they are made of glass and are breakable. I find that JJ enjoys the responsibility of being allowed to play with fragile items and, given prior warning and the right environment, can be trusted to play with them very gently.)
I didn’t tell JJ exactly what to draw – I let her decide for herself. She immediately started drawing big swirls, and declared that she was drawing “new hair”.
Here she is holding up her finished ‘portrait’.
And the best bit? With a wet wipe she could wipe the surface clean easily herself and start all over again. This was a quick and easy activity that we’ll definitely be doing again (and again, and again).
Rachel (from Racheous: Loveable Learning) and I must have been channelling each other because she did a similar activity called Mirror Portraits, except she had the brilliant idea to use a special markers (that really make the pictures pop)! Or for more messy mirror play, Debs from Learn with Play at Home let her kids paint on their hallway mirror. And for those who want to play with mirrors without the mess, check out Kate’s beautiful Reggio: Mirrors Pinterest board.