I adore pumpkin pie. If I could have it my way, I would clean off an entire pie myself! Every Thanksgiving and Christmas I look forward to that first bite of creamy, pumpkin pie. But in the meantime, for the sake of my health (mostly my waistline!), I use the imaginary spoon and pretend to enjoy a bite now and then.
No, this is not about dieting. Yes, this is about an imaginary spoon and how you and your child can create an imaginary spoon as well. This is about pantomiming.
What is pantomiming? Pantomiming is acting without words.
I was first introduced to pantomiming when I started co-teaching classes with a theater teacher. I loved watching the teacher use her two hands and mold a baseball bat out of thin air. The students were so curious about what she was making. You could see the light bulb above their heads turn on, one by one, as they realized what she was making and acting out – getting ready to swing the baseball bat. When it came to their turn to create something, it was amazing to witness how this technique of using their imagination completely opened up their world to another form of expression and creativity.
Nowadays when I am teaching by myself sans a theater expert, I incorporate pantomiming into the songs and short poems. One of my favorite ones goes like this:
Way up high in the apple tree (Raise your arms above your head)
Two little apples smiled at me! (Make a fist in each hand to mimic apples)
I shook that tree as hard as could! (Pretend to shake the trunk of the tree)
DOWN came the apples… (Make the fists again and have them slowly “fall” to the ground – with the word “down” I like to make my voice start off really high and dive down along with the apples”)
CRUNCH! (Pretend to take a bite out of the apples)
mmmmmmMMMMMMMmmmmm, they were good! (Rub your tummy)
Once the children have the poem memorized, I ask them to change what type of food they are getting from the tree. Let’s say someone suggests a banana. We then pantomime peeling the banana skin off before we eat it at the end. You would be surprised at how delicious an imaginary banana can taste!
This type of game is a great way to share a laugh with your child while activating the imagination. It’s also a short and sweet so it can be played just about any time, anywhere.
Here’s to finding your imaginary spoon – making an everyday task just a little more creative!