Ever notice kids seem to prefer playing with real things instead of actual toys? Give them a door, a box, an old cellular phone, a computer keyboard, even an old toaster (cord cut off, of course), and they're elated for hours!
Store with 'Real Groceries'
Use your empty grocery packaging as store items. This provides all kinds of opportunity for them to feel grown-up, role play, practice sharing, relationship building, counting, math, ... I'm sure the list goes on.
We had a blast with this store!
Cut packing foam into useable shapes. I used this piece as a bed for our doll house.
Then we wrapped it up in a colorful scarf, and voila! A doll bed! (or mini teddy bed in this case ...)
With scissors and a pipe cleaner, we've also transformed a cheerios box into a trailer for my son's John Deere Tractor. He played with it for days, giving rides to various teddies and toys.
And, popcorn in a tray works wonderfully too as an indoor sandbox. Just pour some popcorn kernels into a cookie sheet, add some favorite backhoes, loaders and dump trucks, and you've got yourself a great new game. Hours of fun!
I'd love to hear & see your great ideas for making free games and toys in your home. Link up so I can come and see them!