Real vs Pretend and Young Children

tips Nov 06, 2023
Real vs. Pretend

Halloween is an enchanting time, filled with costumes, candy, and tales of the supernatural. As parents, it's a joy to watch our children immerse themselves in the world of make-believe. But this season, let's also remember the importance of teaching kids the distinction between real and pretend. It's a lesson that goes beyond Halloween and is invaluable for their growth.

To show the significance of this lesson, let me share my story on how I was able to approach this. Living in Los Angeles, I have a unique opportunity to show my daughters the magic behind pretend. The city, famous for its entertainment industry, provided a backstage pass to the world of movies and television. 

As you may know, Los Angeles is a city where the line between real and pretend often blur. It's the city of Hollywood, where movie sets come to life, and characters from our favorite TV shows seem to step right out of the screen. My daughters are lucky enough to grow up amidst this enchanting world of make-believe.

One day, we had the chance to visit a movie set. And they even got to see their own mom in front of the camera. Our friend sweetly allowed me the chance to be an extra who got to scream on cue. My girls, wide-eyed with wonder, saw actors, costumes, and props up close. They met writers and directors, and they realized that the characters they adored on screen were just people, playing a role. That experience opened a door to a conversation about the magic of pretend.

We talked about how imagination brings stories to life, how costumes and makeup transform actors, and how special effects create illusions. This conversation was not about demystifying the magic but about appreciating it. My daughters learned that the real world and the world of pretend coexist, each with its unique charm.

You don't need to live in Los Angeles to teach this lesson; it's accessible to all. In this quick video, I will show you how.


Why Children Must Learn The Difference Between Real and Pretend. 


A few big takeaways and details:

  •  Distinguishing real from pretend nurtures critical thinking, empowers children to engage in creative play, and builds resilience by understanding what is actually scary, which reduces fears and anxieties. 
  •  It's essential for kids to recognize the difference for their safety. They should know when to seek help in a real emergency versus when to enjoy the pretend adventure.
  •  A fun tip for the whole family is to search for and discover behind-the-scenes videos or documentaries about how movies are made especially costumes, makeup, and special effects.

As Halloween approaches, and the enchantment of pretend fills the air, take the time to connect with your child and explore the magic of storytelling encouraging them to be the creators of their own stories. By teaching kids the distinction between real and pretend, you empower them to appreciate the beauty of imagination while navigating the world with wisdom and wonder.

Now I’m looking forward to hearing from you! What is a way you approach the difference between real and pretend? Please share with the community on Instagram.

Happy Halloween!

With Hugs & Happiness,



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