Doubloons or Death: Playing Pirates

August 29, 2014

ARRR. Cast off and be hearty ya scurvy scalleywags.

Pirates are fascinating to children and adults. For some reason we have romanticized what must have been a lonely, dangerous, illegal life and profession into a glamorous and sophisticated enviable character.


Is it “Peter Pan”? Or more recently “Pirates of the Caribbean”? It is unlikely your youngest children have seen Johnny Depp’s enticing portrayal of Captain Jack Sparrow. And Captain Hook is the villain to our hero Peter pan. For whatever reason, pirates are here to stay in the imaginative play of children.

Skills and learning and benefits of playing pirates includes: drama and role play, being creative, kinesthetic or tactile, language and social skills, spatial, math, fine motor and building. Guess with all that going on being a pirate might be a good thing.

Pirate-Birthday-Party-by-kris-krug-at-flickr-20155523_13dfa5c00b_zThe Stage: Ships and boats will not be necessary. Although we generally associate pirates with pirate ships, children will be happy turning their bed, the sofa or and entire room into their pirate ship.


The Props: A bandanna for your little buccaneers head, a shirt with stripes, a sash belt around their waist, rain boots and a sword prepares them for fun on the ocean. Make an eye patch from elastic thread and black construction paper. Pens and paper to create treasure maps. Spyglass is actually hidden inside your role of paper towels. Captains hook was always a favorite prop in our house. And a Parot; a parrot is an absolute necessity; so load up to the nearest pet store.

Hopefully your kids will be bringing home lots of booty, not dead fish or frightening monsters, sailing the high seas in search of adventure and treasure!