By Tammy Harrison
I picked my two kids up from Montessori school one day, and a dose of reality slapped me in the face yet again. Two of the teachers in the toddler room were splayed out on the floor, with scissors and cutting tools, making a large appliance box into a wonderful castle for the kids to play with. I gasped, and quickly left before the kids could see what was going on.
I came home from their school, disappointed in myself. I was raised with few toys (that I can remember) and, did not grow up with any toy dysfunctions. Was time for me to take action. Just thinking in terms of *cardboard*, I walked around the house, looking for various items that I was sure would entertain the kids for hours:
(1) Boxes from shipments - We could use them individually, to build a house or a mask. We could use a bunch of them to build a fortress or even to separate the kid's room so the manly man could have some privacy. We could even make a train out of them!
(2) Paper towel and toilet paper rolls - Binoculars, goggles, trumpets, elephant trunks, stilts for stuffed animals.
(3) Sheets of cardboard found with new shirts or packages of underwear - Create cool hats, draw pictures and *tile* our wall, decorate them as stones and pretend the carpet was the ocean and the stones our islands.
(4) Cereal and food boxes - make a puppet theatre and create hand puppets or turn a doorway into a mock-brick wall and have them crash through it.
(5) Computer boxes -- Put the old computer back in the box and pretend that the mailman is delivering a brand new computer! I'm loving this idea, as it will take HOURS for the kids to figure out where all of those wires go!
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