You only have to have to watch children play for a few minutes before you realize that there is a lot more going on then just playing. Playing is how kids learn things. It's how they problem solve, learn to work together, try out different roles, experiment, discover how things work, expand their creativity, try something new, push themselves beyond what they thought they could do, explore and so much more. Nothing makes this point more clear then giving young children a cardboard box!
Like many families these days we order a lot of our stuff online. Things like diapers, wipes, cleaners that are hard to fit in a cart already carrying two children and that easily can be delivered to your front door for the same price. Of course all of these items do come in packaging, something I usually like to see if we can give another life to. This week we received a large order of diapers, wipes and dish detergent. I left the boxes on the floor to go put everything away and came back to discover the girls had taken all the boxes and put them together to create a little city of forts. They both happily played with these boxes for the longest time, climbing in and out, moving them around. It reminded me of one of our favorite book Not a Box by Antoinette Portis, that was part of my books that inspire creativity list from earlier this week. The boxes have now been on the floor in our dining room all week long because they are still playing with them. They have stacked them, made them houses, one morning The Bee asked me to cut windows in one, we made a little door in another, they have sat in them and are still going. All a testament to the unbelievably creative minds of a child!