Activities for Kids at Home - Cardboard Castle
Nothing spurs the imagination of a child quite like a cardboard box. There are endless possibilities. Is it a boat? A car? And for larger boxes they can be bakeshops, hospitals, castles. There really is no limit.
Kids just can't resist climbing in any box and just hanging out.
Where to Get Boxes?
You can usually get boxes for free by asking around at furniture and appliance stores. My dad would get refrigerator boxes. They were tall enough for us to stand up in and then he would cut out a window and a door and we were all set for about a month of imagination.
Big retailers like Walmart do get stuff that comes in giant cardboard boxes. Call, ask to speak to a manager and ask if they will hold any extra large boxes for you. Chances are they will.
If all of that fails you can always hit up Amazon. It won't be free but you can order some fairly large shipping boxes online. Or they have premade cardboard castles already decorated and ready to go. That way you will definitely get your money's worth.
Make it a Family Project
Sure, you can just throw a box in the corner with some holes in it and let your kid enjoy. But it's much more fun if you work together with them and help them build. That way you can get their opinions of what they want and help them cut out windows and doors where they want them. It lets you really get to know your kids.
If they're aren't sure about this whole cardboard box thing you can decide what it's going to be and get their imaginations going. Tell them it's a store, give them some stuff to sell, maybe some play money. Go to the window and ask to buy a box of cereal. It's as much or as little of a learning experience as you want it to be.
Get some good strong markers and let your kids draw all over that thing. With supervision of course and make sure they understand the difference between the box and the walls of the house.
Crayons just won't cut it. I can tell you this from experience. Or my box was just too dark of cardboard. I remember wanting to draw on it and it just never turning out right. But markers would have done the trick, but my little sister would always leave the tops off and they would dry out.
My mom would let my sister and I eat snacks in our castle. Usually non-messy snacks like carrot sticks or celery. Maybe crackers if we were being good. It's so much fun to eat lunch in something you just created. It really keeps the magic going and makes it that much more fun.
When They Get Bored Let it Go
My mother was the master of toy rotation. As soon as we showed a hint of boredom in a toy she would hide it away and pull out some other toy that she had hidden three months ago. We were immediately entertained with this new toy we had forgotten about. So as soon as they stop showing interest you are free to get rid of this giant box that has been taking up space. In six months when you're struggling to figure out what to do you can get another one and do it all over again. They'll love it just as much as the first time.
This is the Book that Started the Obsession
Did You Ever Play in a Box?
Did you play in a box as a kid? Do you let your kids play in boxes? What are your thoughts?
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