It’s imagination week here at My Mommy Style, if you have missed the introduction of the Summer Learning Series you can start HERE. We are so excited to have Julia as a guest today sharing this fun family activity!
Greetings from The Quiet Grove! My name is Julia. I am writing from my home in Eagle Mountain, Utah (while my 3 little kids are playing with their awesome father). I am excited for the opportunity to write this guest post about how to foster your children’s imagination without having to spend a ton of money, through holding regular family theater nights.
Growing up, I remember spending hours upon hours playing dress up with my older brothers. We would put together the craziest outfits and come up with the most random story lines in our pretend play. Then one day we had an idea. It was a brilliant idea really. We decided to put on a play for our parents! Even better, we were going to CHARGE THEM MONEY to watch it!
My parents (who were always looking for ways to encourage us to use our imagination and creativity) totally loved our idea. They even offered to buy a ticket roll for us to use. And then offered to help us make a ticket booth out of a large box that they happened to have from replacing one of our kitchen appliances.
The night of our first performance my brothers and I were bursting with excitement.
I was in charge of manning the ticket booth while my brothers finished setting up the stage (we just used an old sheet in front of our book case (anchored by large books. When mom, dad and our baby sister were all seated our performance began.
We had soo much fun this became a regular event at our home.
Sometimes we preformed as little actors a play we had written ourselves, and sometimes (usually when it was my brother’s turn to choose) we would build ships out of constructs (like legos) and we would put on a war story in which every ship was in pieces by the end (What can I say? War can be ugly).
Now that I am grown and have small children of my own I thought it was time to resurrect the Family Home Theater Night.
When I told my children (who already adore dressing up and playing make believe as I did at their age) they were super excited. I can’t wait to see what my children come up with to entertain us this summer with our weekly Family Theater nights. So Far there have been talks of plays, storytelling, and light shows (with glow sticks.)
Here are 5 Budget Friendly tips to set up Family Theater Nights at your home this Summer:
Tickets give the Family Theater performances that perfect added touch of real. You can choose whether or not family and friends have to pay for the tickets. The point is each person attending has a ticket to attend just like a real show! You can either buy generic ticket Rolls at stores like Office Max or Walmart for under $5 or you can click HERE (link: ) to download FREE Family Theater Night ticket printables.
Why pay full price for dress ups your children will quickly grow out of and accessories that will be broken (especially if you have small children.). I have found great quality dress ups by both looking on local FB yard sale groups and by getting up early on Saturday mornings and making the yard sale rounds. I have also found some great deals at local thrift stores. Keep your eyes open and you will be amazed at what you can find.
-A Curtain Backdrop
The easiest way to create the feeling of a stage is a Curtain Backdrop. All it takes is an old sheet and a tension curtain rod. The beauty of using a tension rod is that you have the flexibility to put the curtain up at different locations around your house like doorways, stairways, or in our case in the alcove in front of your TV. And when the children are done you can easily take it down and put it away. You can find a tutorial Here for how to easily make your own.
-Include in your Dress Up Chest Random Lengths of Fabric With a Box of Safety Pins. (For older kids)
As I grew older I found that I wanted to design my own outfits. By adding random lengths of various fabrics and a small box of clothespins we found that we were able to be even more creative in our outfits for our productions and play time.
You can use a plastic storage bucket from the store (with a lid) or an old family trunk to fill with your dress ups, accessories, and props . Whatever the container you choose, it is nice if it has a lid or can close so that it can looks nice when the children aren’t using it’s content. This way you can keep it in a easily accessible spot while not over cluttering your living space..
No matter how you do it (fancy or simple), I encourage you to set up a regular Family Home Theater Night. Your children will have a blast while at the same time they make amazing memories
You can read more fun ideas for your family here at The Quiet Grove.
Don’t forget to check back with our Summer Learning Series all Summer long!Don’t forget to like us on Facebook, follow our YouTube Channel, and watch our day to day happenings on Pinterest and Instagram! We are giving away a pearl necklace EVERY week through instagram if you do one of these activities with your kids and share the picture on instagram tag us @mymommystyle and use #mmsSummerLearning you will have the chance to win and be featured! Happy Learning!!