Suggestions for simple play

Written by Jo Hood | Published

Suggestions for simple play

Peg play

A tub of colourful pegs can mean many hours of play and learning. Peg play is a fun way to learn colours and counting, improve fine motor skills, and engage in experimental play. Children are often fascinated by the way clothes pegs open and close.

Gather clothes pegs, small containers, something to clip pegs onto like a clothes airer, and small things for pegging, like doll’s clothes, socks or wash cloths.

  • Hanging small items on a clothes airer is a great way for children to exercise their pincer grip which they need to develop for learning to write
  • Sorting pegs by colour into different containers, by dropping them in or clipping pegs onto the sides of boxes or buckets. Encourage children to count and name the colours
  • See how many pegs can fit on a shirt sleeve or clip them together to make a long chain
  • Younger children might just have fun squeezing the pegs, putting them into a tub … tipping them out again

Cardboard boxes

An empty box is a fun starting point for imaginative play, and can be turned into all sorts of things – a castle, a shop, a car or bed for teddy. Children’s creativity and problem-solving skills turn ideas into reality. Boxes of any size can get a child’s imagination working, and a box big enough to sit in is especially fun.

Transforming and decorating the box with the help of an adult might need scissors or a craft knife, tape and glue, paints, markers or crayons, pieces of fabric, coloured paper or cellophane. Younger children might like to crawl in and out, drawing on and inside the box. Older children can use problem-solving skills to create whatever their imagination desires.

Here are some suggestions if children need a prompt or starting point

  • Make a house, plane or car
  • Make a robot costume – cut out holes for arms and head and decorate with aluminium foil
  • Make a puppet theatre
  • Turn the box into a cave or tunnel

We hope you and your child enjoy using these ideas at home

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