Winter is coming, and with it, Christmas and presents. We have a 3 years old daughter, who has an almost 2 months old sister, and it's time thinking about which toys to get her (we have almost full control, since we have to choose for presents from grandparents as well).
In particular, we are wondering about the benefits of dolls.
Currently she has neither dolls nor tea parties (she has tons of cuddly toys though). When she wants to play tea parties, either she gets actual dishes or she uses objects or toys which look like dishes (or not…). As for dolls, yesterday she took a jar of pickles, named it as her newborn sister, and used toilet paper to dress it.
It seems like not having a doll or tea parties would help developing imagination.
On the other hand, we can see she tries to identify as her mother and she'd probably like to have a doll which she could dress and play parent with.
So, I'm wondering about the implications of realistic toys versus "hijacked toys". What would be the benefits of having a doll against having her making a doll of whatever she can find ? Should we get her one ?
I'm wondering about the implications of realistic toys versus "hijacked toys".**
Side notes :
I won't buy her a doll just because she's a girl, because I don't want to enforce gender stereotypes. I'll buy her one if I think it's beneficial to her mind. But gender stereotypes are not the point of my question. Answers addressing primarily this issue are off-topic.
In addition, she goes to school, but currently she doesn't have much out of school interactions with other children so we're not much concerned about her being jealous of other children toys.