Playing Doctor: Setting up a Doctor's Office: Dramatic Play

Playing Doctor: Setting up a Doctor’s Office: Dramatic Play

preschool dramatic play

Dramatic play is very important in a developing child; it helps build valuable skills in language, organizing their roles within the play structure, as well as builds on imagination and creativity. Dramatic play can also serve as a valuable role in helping your child work through any issues they may be experiencing. Trouble with a friend? You may see them make two of their toys have an argument with one another. Something new happens at school? You may see them recreate a scene at school. My daughter has always gravitated toward playing doctor. Very interested in giving shots and fixing any ailments with band-aids and such. If you notice this fascination/excitement/drive within a particular area of play, help your child delve even further by setting up a scene for them i.e. a doctor's office, restaurant, grocery store etc. Dramatic play can be more engaging by using real-life items as much as possible. This can help a child make real-life connections throughout their play. Given my daughter's interest, I thought it would be fun to set up a doctor's office.

preschool dramatic play
preschool dramatic play

What you Need:

1. Any real x-rays you may have

2. Used vitamin/medication containers

3. Band-aids

4. Gauze

5. Ice pack

6. Real anatomical pictures: I used a skeletal structure and an upper organ structure (google search and free print)

7. Doctor mask

8. Any wraps, slings, braces, etc.

9. Medical chart/Checklist (I made sure to make simple, with descriptive pictures), sheet protector, clipboard, & dry erase marker

10. Medical ailment cards

11. Play doctor kit

12. Table & patient bed/chair (we used a doll bed and her art table & chair)

13. Patients (dolls, stuffed animals, little brother etc.)

*All real life items (minus the x-rays) were found at our local dollar store!


preschool dramatic play
  1. Checklist: Have a simple checklist with pictures next to them (eyes, nose, mouth, ears, heart, legs, arms etc.). I used google images to collect my free pictures. Next to the picture and word, draw a box to check, then put the checklist in a sheet protector. Put this on a clipboard with a dry erase marker.

  2. Ailment cards: I made about 5 of these. Just google image "sick cartoon" and several options come up; hurt finger, knee, arm, cough, fever etc. Print them out and tape to index cards. This will help to give your child some direction in the play.

  3. Set everything up on their table, tape their medical signs up on a wall at eye level, set up their patient bed and patients beside the table.

  4. Let their imagination soar!

preschool dramatic play
preschool dramatic play