Cheap Imaginative Play Ideas!

I am such a huge advocate for imaginative play.  I think children need a good daily dose until at least 9 years of age.  There is a developmental unfoldment of the imagination that provides the ground work for higher order thinking.   Imaginative play provides nourishment for the frontal lobes.  In reality, imaginative play is a very academic activity – we just don’t see the results directly.

Here are a few things I found on the internet that I loved!  So easy and cheap!  I have noticed through the years that if I involve the children in the “transformation” of materials – there is a deep appreciation and engagement in the items constructed.  These are a few ideas that the children could be in the process of making them.   Obviously, they can not cut the cardboard but they could help design and paint the item.

From – they have a series of ideas for what you can make out of a box!  I loved, loved, loved making things out of boxes as a young girl!
Dress up play!  Make costumes for your dramatic play center out of throw aways! Great idea from RealSimple. com!
Here is a kitchen set made out of a box!  How cool is that?  I found this on pinterest and did not find a site for instructions.  If you know it – please let me know and I will attach it.

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  1. Jennifer says:

    I agree, imaginative play is so important! I’m lucky enough to be able to have 1 hour of unstructured “free centers” in my kindergarten class. This means my kiddos can “play” at housekeeping without having to worry about producing anything. I take a ton of pictures and keep a journal so I can jot down conversations I hear or learning taking place – it is amazing to see them incorporate ideas we’ve been working on in class in their play! I love these box ideas, I am going to get my own 4 kiddos involved and see what we can make with all of the boxes we have lying around! thanks for sharing!

    Jennifer @ Herding Kats In Kindergarten

    • Your students are so lucky! I am such a huge, huge advocate of unstructured free centers. I gave 30 to 45 minutes everyday myself. And keeping the journal of conversations is such a rich and revealing practice! Keep up the amazing work you do!

  2. What lovely ideas from brown bags and boxes.
    Amazing what joy the little things can bring to both children and adults! 🙂

    So nice to meet you through BYW 2.0!
    All the best,

  3. I love the CD´s used for the kitchen! This project could easily relate to Reduce, Reuse, Recycle project too!

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