Big imagination? - Mothering Forums

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#1 of 11 Old 06-23-2009, 05:25 PM - Thread Starter
 
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Do gifted children have big imaginations? My 3.5 yo dd is constantly using hers, but it's more than just an invisible friend. She'll imagine she has slippers on, she'll imagine she's swimming in water with Shamu, etc... And today while at the store I had to hold her imaginary purse while she got out her imaginary chocolate milk from her imaginary purse and then proceeded to unscrew her imaginary milk and drink it. Then she put the lid back on and put it back in her imaginary purse and asked for her imaginary purse back. LOL
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#2 of 11 Old 06-23-2009, 05:35 PM
 
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Oh yeah! Last week, my dd's imaginary friend fell and got hurt by the swings. So she used her imaginary cell phone to call the imaginary doctor. Then she waited for the doctor to come and was waving her arms and yelling "over here, he's over here" when the imaginary doctor came up the driveway and she directed him to her friend. Then I had to move out of my chair because Hideki had to sit there to rest. And she got him some ice cream.

Also I have to push her AND her imaginary friend on the swings at the playground.

She's had a few imaginary friends but Hideki seems to stick around.

DD also sets up imaginary ice cream shops. She'll take your imaginary money and put it in the register then make your sundae then give it to you!
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#3 of 11 Old 06-23-2009, 05:59 PM
 
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The ocean spans half the floor in her room. Alligators, lions, and dinosaurs regularly invade our house to dine on invisible food. And we are all often not who we thought we were. Today, for example, I was told that I was a friendly, almond-eating tiger, but one of my feet was a fish, and the other was a walrus.
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#4 of 11 Old 06-23-2009, 08:33 PM
 
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Yes in our case too. My daughter doesn't have invisible friends that she interacts with but she does have a whole imaginary world which she talks about. There have been two of these worlds in her life, both lasting well over a year.

The current world is Katiesa Land where the Katiesa cats live. The rivals to the Katiesa cats are the Maya Cats. There is a cast of regular characters that we hear about on a daily basis. We have drawings of all of them, maps of the cities, street names, relationships and even a language. She also has a whole bunch of songs which are sung in Katiesa language.

We rarely have "normal" conversations, everything involves this imaginary world.
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#5 of 11 Old 06-23-2009, 10:51 PM
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I don't know if DD is gifted as she is only four years old, but she certainly is advanced, so I thought I'd answer. She has been very imaginative for a very long time, but especially after she became more verbal at around 22 months, when her first imaginary friend was an elephant. Now she is not much into imaginary friends (though she was for a good while...mainly animals) but lives pretty much constantly in an imaginary world and anybody around her must be part of it. I've actually been thinking about posting about this for a couple of weeks as, I must confess, sometimes the constant need for pretending makes me a little loopy! does anyone else feel this way sometimes? I don't know if it is just me not being very patient about it, but like I have on occasion told her that sometimes I I just like being me and for her to be my daughter! then I feel guilty because I really love her creativity and want to foster it...I'm just not too much into pretend, I guess!
I'm also wondering if anyone else with a very imaginative child has found any kind of outlet for this creativity/imagination (that does not necessarily involve those around being a slave to this imagination!). DH and I thought maybe acting classes but she is probably too young for that, plus I'm not sure it would work because what she likes is to be the creator and director of the whole pretend situation. Anyway...I don't mean to hijack this thread, so feel free to let me know if you think I should post my question as a separate thread...
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#6 of 11 Old 06-23-2009, 11:50 PM
 
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Originally Posted by iot View Post
I've actually been thinking about posting about this for a couple of weeks as, I must confess, sometimes the constant need for pretending makes me a little loopy! does anyone else feel this way sometimes? I don't know if it is just me not being very patient about it, but like I have on occasion told her that sometimes I I just like being me and for her to be my daughter! ..
Ha. This struck me! I don't think G is gifted based on anything he's doing, but I lurk here since I am gifted (specifically in math) and can sometimes offer insight.

Anyway. A few months ago (G was two) I remember a day that he made us pretend to be the Berestein Bears and we were pretending to be Thomas the Train characters. I was Mama Bear pretending to be Edward and he was Brother Bear pretending to be Diesel 10. ?!?! I was thinking "if you add one more layer to this I'm going to lose it". Seriously, he talks in the third person when it gets complicated -- probably because he knows I mess up. "Mama bear that is Edward, you say to Brother bear that is Diesel 10 that you want to chuff around the yard". Aaaargh.
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#7 of 11 Old 06-24-2009, 02:37 AM
 
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We're always someone different around here!

The book Living with Intensity talks about gifted kids and their intensities, and there are different kids -- intellectual, emotional, physical. One that surprised me that they talk about is 'imaginational intensity'. I didn't realize until I read that how much of my kids' energy goes into imaginational play.

Ds went through periods where he would want to play fire fighter non-stop. In addition to being the dispatcher, I also had to visit the fire station for a tour. Since the 'station' was our bedroom, it involved going to look at our bed and being told all of the features of the 'truck' that we were looking at.

One day my sister and BIL and their kids were over and ds was excited to give them a tour of the 'station'. My BIL (a VERY bright guy) lasted about 3 minutes before he said "I can't do this." Until that moment, I hadn't realized that despite my BILs many gifts (academic, musical, social-emotional), he's not imaginative in the same way that my sister (and the rest of our family) is. He's creative, he's funny, but he's not imaginative.

So, it's interesting to me to see this as one area of 'giftedness' that I hadn't even thought about before.

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#8 of 11 Old 06-24-2009, 07:24 AM
 
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We're always someone different around here!

The book Living with Intensity talks about gifted kids and their intensities, and there are different kids -- intellectual, emotional, physical. One that surprised me that they talk about is 'imaginational intensity'. I didn't realize until I read that how much of my kids' energy goes into imaginational play.

.
That is so interesting to me. We constantly live in imaginary/pretend world. DD also has extremely vivid dreams. I thought all kids were like that since she is my first. I am realizing the more she is around kids her own age that she is very different that way.

Do you know the author of "Living with Intensity"? I am at my wits end and it seems as though it could be very insightful. I did a library search and didn't find it. So this one I may need to buy. Any mommas here like to sell their copy? Thanks!
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#9 of 11 Old 06-24-2009, 04:43 PM
 
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DS: "I am a little green frog" and DD: " I am a blue pussy cat with the blue eyes and blue tail" (sometimes green or pink). Then they hop and crawl around and give each other orders "Meee-oow, come here little green frog. You must eat your fly for lunch...." This has been going on, with the same characters, for 3-4 weeks now. So at this point, no, I don't really think it is very imaginative; in fact, I'd call it boring. On the plus side, they love it, and they usually don't ask me to be anything but myself, or the mommy cat, and besides the occasional licks or requests for scratches behind the ears, it isn't so hard on me.
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#10 of 11 Old 06-24-2009, 05:06 PM
 
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Originally Posted by iot View Post
I've actually been thinking about posting about this for a couple of weeks as, I must confess, sometimes the constant need for pretending makes me a little loopy! does anyone else feel this way sometimes? I don't know if it is just me not being very patient about it, but like I have on occasion told her that sometimes I I just like being me and for her to be my daughter! then I feel guilty because I really love her creativity and want to foster it...I'm just not too much into pretend, I guess!
I can identify with this. The only time it really makes me crazy is if I am DD and DD is me and I am doing something that is appropriate only for adults and DD thinks she should be doing it instead of me. We spend whole days as each other, which is fine because we both mostly do the same things...but then, when it is time to cook supper or pour the milk have a cup of hot, caffeinated tea, and she wants to keep the roles reversed, it's a recipe for disaster. I usually say something like, "I like pretending with you most of the time, but I don't want to pretend any more right now because _____." I wish I could say that she just accepts it when I say that, but unfortunately it almost always ends in tears.
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#11 of 11 Old 06-25-2009, 01:37 AM
 
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Like with so many thing, it doesn't seem to be universal. I think DS's imagination is pretty close to average 3 yo levels. He generally seems to need props as a jumping off point for his imaginary play.

He talks to "people" on his toy phone, including his grandson (of course that makes me a great-grandmother.) He makes up basic stories to go along with his playmobils and trains. He occasionally feels a need to reassure himself that his chair is not a monster with a mouth and 4 eyes (it has a lonng thin slit and 4 screws.) The most imaginitive thing he's done so far was insisting that we hide under our blanket to get away from a dragon.

ETA: None of his stuffed animals have names given by him. His beloved bunny is simply called "Mr Rabbit," his teddy bear is called "bear," his stuffed nut brown hare from Guess How Much I Love You is simply called "Nut Brown Hare." The only stuffed animals who have names are ones who either came with names already, like "Peter Rabbit" or ones that DH or I named before DS was around or talking.

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