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Arts and Crafts

Cardboard Play for Toddlers and Young Children

Toddlers (1 1/2 – 3 years) physical skills have developed enormously so


Toddlers (1 1/2 – 3 years) physical skills have developed enormously so they can most likely climb in and out of upturned boxes now by themselves. They are beginning to explore the idea of pretend play.

A box can be turned into anything from a house to a car, to a post box, all the ideas are in the child’s mind from their real life.

Different sized boxes lend themselves to opening their exploratory play and making sense of their world.

Oil pastels are great for drawing onto carboard for children to add some colour magic to their ideas.

Sitting in a box nook reading books can be very relaxing too.

Your toddler may also like to collect things and put them in a box to push them around, great for coordination of movements and building muscle strength.


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For young children (3-6 years) the symbolism only but increases with age, castles, robots, dinosaurs, anything.

Cardboard box creations, big and small, provide lots of opportunities for children to express their imagination and when with others problem solve together, share and develop their social skills.

Older children can help younger children reach and move boxes around which builds awareness of the needs of others and helping skills which are important to social competence.

Boxes can be used as they are, or be painted, drawn on, cut, or stuck together. The possibilities are endless and children will be developing and practicing their fine and gross motor skills as they go.


Thanks so much Dee @nurturing_potential for sharing these fantastic ideas and insights.

Safe to say we’ll all be raiding the recycling bin!! 

The Family Edit & Co. 

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