Just to follow up with the situation with my daughter, I ended up talking to her this morning.
The question she asked was "Why?" The answer I provided after a bit of fumbling around for analogies was that it's sort of like when she and her friends are playing together, and maybe one of them has a little brother or sister who's like five or something. They really want to play, but aren't quite ready to play with the older kids yet. She seemed to get it, and she was okay with it, I think. I also told her that I'd run something for her, about which she was pretty excited.
It'd be nice if we could find a few more kids to involve in this, but this is suburban Columbia County, Georgia. It's Christian Taliban country, and I'm a bit worried about the parental reaction to something like this--Satanic Panic and whatnot. I tried to explain that part to her, but it was a bit harder to do. We'll figure it out though. I may have to draft The Wife, much to her chagrin.