There are just two voices in this conversation. The animals provide a vehicle for their voices to be heard. Wild animals are a means to address topics that may be otherwise difficult. Topics like death and nightmares are not easy to discuss. Evil wizards and giant octopi can be scary. Opening up about fears can be a challenge. Let’s learn something from our children. Read on and enjoy these two young voices as they talk about dreams.
There is a cougar, a small bear, a turtle and a lady bug on the table with branches, bark, leaves and driftwood. E has the little bear and B has the cougar. They spend more than 20 minutes playing with the animals, bark and branches. The animals are sleeping under pieces of bark. Here’s a little of their conversation…
E says “I thought you were dead.”
B says “Let’s just sleep.” After awhile… “I had a bad dream. There was a giant octopus and I killed him.”
B says to E “And pretend the little guy had a bad dream. Then we wake up and you say… Mom, I had a bad dream!”
E repeats…”Mom, I had a bad dream!” Then she continues…” There was a bad guy trying to kill me and I killed him and all the evil wizards came…”
Thoughts from Teacher Cindy:
Dreams are so mysterious. Play has a great way of allowing children to work out dreams, good or bad. Evil wizards, death, and giant octopi can all seem very real in a dream.
When I hear this exchange it reminds me of how play can function as a method of coping with fear. When the scary things happen to someone else (or in this case some other creature) it is easier to think about and talk about. In the sunlight with a friend, dreams do seem a little less scary.
Two voices exploring the world and making meaning out of dreams. Two voices creating stories together. Listen carefully and you will learn the value of play.