Rudolf Steiner in one of his lectures to teachers mentioned ~ Doll is an image of the human being for the young child.
The doll brings out into the physical world what lies within the depths of the child’s inner world – their emotions, their imagination, creativity – through role-playing and imitation.
A perfectly sculpted doll with fixed expressions can be a hindrance to the inner development of the child as it projects a false image of his surroundings. Whereas a handcrafted doll with open and simple features will engage the child in a whole new world of imagination and creativity.
Such a doll, made with natural materials and age appropriate to the developmental stage, becomes an invitation for imaginative play to unfold and nourishes the child’s sense of life and well-being.
When in the sacred space of free play the doll takes upon many representations i.e. of being a baby, a friend, a sibling and most importantly, the child sees an extension of oneself in the doll. With this as an image and knowing that a doll for a young child is the most intimate playmate which holds a very special place in their hearts, it’s important that we take great care in choosing these special playmates for them.
“A doll is the image of a human being and is therefore the most suited toy to develop and enliven the self-image in a growing child.” ~ Freya Jafke – an extract from her book ‘Toymaking with children’.