“With nothing more than a little imagination, boxes can be transformed into forts or house, spaceships or submarines, castles or caves. Inside a big cardboard box, a child is transported to a world of his or her own, one where anything is possible.” National Toy Hall of Fame.

Cardboard Box 2Did you know the humble old cardboard box is in the National Toy Hall of Fame? In my opinion, it absolutely deserves this prestigious recognition.

Cardboard boxes can engage children for hours for minimal cost and minimal impact on the environment. But more than that, playing with a cardboard box can build skills that toys with more bells and whistles can’t, namely imagination and resourcefulness.

Just ask any parent after a birthday party for their toddler. Yes, we already know…the child enjoyed the box more than what was packed inside it.

Cardboard boxes inspire creativity and imagination as the children build upon, transform and reinvent them. As all early childhood teachers know, play based learning is where you need to be! The box takes children on adventures and helps them explore imaginary places in their minds.

Oh my gosh, just go peek in Mrs. Robyn Cox’s Discovery Room. The cardboard masterpieces in her room are amazing. Ask the students what they think about it!

Cardboard Box 1Researchers say and parents and teachers agree, the best kind of play with boxes in unstructured play-giving children the opportunity to explore a versatile open-ended material without an end result in mind.

So here’s your challenge: Simply put out boxes and see where the play unfolds. You can include: ropes, string, wool, pegs, masking tape, colored markers, glue, play silks, scarves, smaller boxes, tubes, paper, cushions, blankets, old sheets, even sticks and branches to make it even more interesting.

So here’s my challenge to all of you – let those kiddos build, create and imagine! AND please, send us your pictures! CLICK HERE to email them in! We can’t wait to hear from you!

Dr. Michele