Boost your child’s creativity and problem solving skills by encouraging them to look at the world in a whole new way…through miniature eyes!
By Fairy Houses - License: My Own Photo
Want to pull the kids away from the electronics and encourage more pretend play?
Easy. Inspire your kids to expand their imaginations by heading outside in the backyard and looking at the world through a smaller set of eyes.
What You’ll Need:
- Small toys (dinosaurs and fairies work well!)
- Natural materials – sticks, stones, leaves, etc.
- An old basket or other junk material (or Goodwill finds)
- A glue gun
Bring your child outside and scout out a mysterious place — like a small bush, or shade tree. Then encourage them to look at that object as if they were the size of their toy. For example, with my daughters, I would say, “If I were a fairy, I’d build a hammock right THERE.” and then point at a small bush branch.
Then encourage them to finish the statement for themselves. Where would they build a garage for their car? How would they get water for their dinosaur?
Then gather up a bunch of materials, plug in your glue gun, and start crafting a “home” for your child’s dinosaur or fairy. Ask them questions to encourage problem solving:
- Where would the dinosaur sleep?
- What type of food would she eat?
- Can we make a table for her to eat at?
- What can we use to make that table?
The more questions you ask, the more excited your child will get as he starts visualizing and finding creative “solutions” for his little friend. When you’re finished, you can leave the house outside for later, or bring it inside to use it again.
- 15 to 60
- Children: Yes
- Family: Yes
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- Date End:
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A handheld electronic device that melts wax and allows you to place the wax in specific locations. The wax dries quickly, allowing you to move on faster.
Perfect for all sorts of art and craft projects. Can be found around pine trees or buy them at a craft store.
Perfect for all sorts of art and craft projects. Can be found around trees or buy them at a craft store.
Use leaves in art and craft projects. They can be founds around trees or you can buy them pre-packaged from craft stores.
Use a basket to carry your things, pack a picnic or use to make an art / craft display.
Why not turn this into a giant playdate! Start by gathering leaves and branches (already on the ground) by taking a walk, and then end up back at your place to turn those “finds” into wonderful fairy and dino homes!
Head to Goodwill or a resale shop to look for inexpensive items that could be added in your miniature outdoor home. You may also want to pick out things you were going to throw away or recycle and see if they could come in handy as well. Things like cardboard, plastic caps, old clothes…all can be useful as you’re creating a special home outside!
For the next few days, slip outside and place little bits of corn on the table, or a small “thank you” note on the table for the kids to find. Every day see if you can add something for them to discover in the morning. It’s a great motivator to get their morning chores done quickly!