“The child, making use of all that he finds around him, shapes himself for the future.”
– Maria Montessori
Plastic is one of the best Loose Parts when it comes to Recycled and Repurposed Items. These are items that most any family can help and donate as they’re taking the milk cap off their milk carton to save or going to the local recycle center for donations!
Plastic Loose Parts
Old Film Roll donated from camera store.
Plastic Cups found at the party supply store. Building towers on the light table is a must!
Milk Caps saved from many families to be repurposed.
Donated guttering pieces from local hardware store.
Plastic shape tiles from a Math Kit (Also can be purchased online).
Plastic PVC piping scraps from a Home Improvement Store.
Plumbing connectors also found at a Home Improvement Store.
Plastic Drink Stirrers found at a Party Supply Store. Love these on the light projector!
Reused Empty Tape Rolls. Great for building in construction or on tabletops!
Empty Thread Spools are great for building with in smaller areas.
Any kind of plastic parts at hardware stores are the best. The more unique the finds, the more children use their creativity to utilize it as it captivates them.
List of Plastic Loose Parts
- Milk Caps
- Gerber Food Containers
- PVC pipes
- Empty Spice Containers
- Film Canisters
- Curtain Rings
- Hair Rollers
- CD Cases
- Game Pieces
- Bubble Wrap
- Lollipop Sticks
- Marker Caps
- Plastic Bead Necklaces
- Golf Balls
- Hula Hoops
- Bag Clips
3 Examples of Plastic Loose Parts in the Classroom
Character Creation on the Light Table with plastic cubes, beads, necklaces, and rulers.
Gutters and PVC pipes for ramps in construction are a must!
Unique plastic finds on the projector can lead to many exploration opportunities for patterning and symmetry.
Remember, ANY material can become a loose part to a child! It’s our job to create the environment to support open-ended explorations and extend their thinking and learning by adding new materials to re-engage!
Needing some help getting families involved? Download the FREE Loose Parts Collection Letter for Families to jump start your collection and deepen your family involvement.
What Loose Parts are YOU playing with? Comment below!
very good and inspiring.
Like the light table ideas. Like more please and where I can order tham.
Prema, you can find light tables in many educational supply catalogs, but they can be pricey! I have seen brilliant light tables where teachers have place twinkle lights in an inexpensive tote container. They are just the right height for our youngest learners and easily portable!
Loved all of the blogs
The lists of loose parts
are very useful
I am so glad to hear this! Let us know how using loose parts has impacted your teaching practice!
Thanks for the list of loose parts and the sample parent letter.
You are most welcome Joy!
This was very inspiring and the list of loose part was helpful! Thanks for sharing!