I keep a plastic tub filled with empty grocery boxes, cardboard rolls and bottle tops. This tub is positioned on the bottom shelf of our toy unit for easy access. The sticky tape and scissors are also kept within reach. All the recycled materials in the tub are for open-ended creating and it is well used. I am constantly topping it up and sometimes it even runs dry. I got this idea after reading Raising a Creative Kid by Jillian Riley.
|Cakey attaches pipe-cleaners to make a moving ramp, Boo watches|
Cakey makes use of this box more than Boo. Cakey is older and her craft skills are more advanced. I am amazed at some of the things she makes completely independently. The beauty of having an easily accessible recycled materials tub is that when she is in a creative mood she can get straight to work... no need to ask me for help.
|This is a castle|
|This is a robot|
|I do not know what this is|
|This is also a castle but this one has a working ramp|
Don't get me wrong, Boo does make use of the tub – just in a different way. She sorts through the boxes, finds one she likes, stuffs it full of pom poms or whatever and carries it with her all day.
I know Cakey and Boo have art and craft in their blood, they love it just like me. I also credit a particular book with Cakey's desire to experiment, invent and create. We picked up a second hand copy of Ingenious Jean written by Susan Chandler and illustrated by Kate Leake. It is about a girl who invents things using the toys and objects she has around her – we have read this book many times. I recently overheard Cakey say to her sister "let me help you, I am ingenious".
The downside of all this creativity is a storage issue. Until quite recently, Cakey quickly forgot about her creations once they has been made and played with. This meant I could make them 'disappear' after a week or so. She is now getting attached to each and every creation and I don't know what to do with them.... I think I might be in trouble...
For some inspiration have a look at my Recycled materials for craft Pinterest board
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Linked to It's Playtime, The Kids Co-op and Kids Get Crafty