During this time of the year, you likely have a number of boxes in various sizes lying around your house or classroom. Instead of throwing them away, come up with creative ways they can be reused in the classroom. For example, children can easily turn a simple cardboard box into a spaceship, tunnel, boat, stove, or other item they can play with or use. In (Almost) Everything You Need to Know About Early Childhood Education, Judy Fujawa lists a variety of things you and the children in your care can do with boxes:

  • Build, stack, sort, line up, etc.
  • Encourage children to make them into a rocket, train, etc.
  • Turn them upside down for additional table space.
  • Crawl into them and tunnel through them.
  • Paint and decorate them with children.
  • Cut various-sized holes to create a target game, peek-a-boo center, etc.
  • Make decorative room dividers.
  • Create a “be alone” space.
  • Use to display children’s art.
  • Set up as a puppet center, TV, or video screen for dramatic play experiences.
  • Arrange for storage, storage, storage.

Remember that these are just a few of the things you can do with boxes. Encourage children to use their imaginations to come up with even more ways to use the boxes you bring into the classroom. You can also check out our Learning with Boxes! board on Pinterest for a variety of fun and creative ways to reuse boxes. If you don’t have any boxes at home, ask your neighbors, go to your local stores to see if they have any boxes they would like to donate, or ask children’s parents to bring in boxes. Exploring how boxes can be reused in the classroom is a great lesson for children (and adults) of all ages!

How Do You Reuse Cardboard Boxes in Your Classroom?
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