Creative thinking, we are told, happens when we think “outside the box”. True. Unless we are talking creating preschool activities using…well…boxes!
Once upon a time, several years ago, a refrigerator box was donated to our preschool. We all know how rare it is to find one of these for our classrooms! Many big box stores break down their boxes and, let’s face it, it’s not everyday that one of our families will purchase a new refrigerator!
However, purchase a new refrigerator Miss Peggy did, and thought of us! She asked if we wanted the box. Our response? When can we pick it up!
Boxes are a blank canvas for children – and adults! There are so many uses and we can reuse a box over and over again! We were so excited about this box that we even named it!
Meet Re Bo (short for Refrigerator Box)!
The ideas for what Re Bo might become were not lacking! “Let’s make a space ship!” “Let’s crawl inside it!” The teachers had ideas as well! “Oooh, this would make a great Post Office!” “We can use this for a backdrop for our Christmas play!” and so the brainstorming began!
The children were so excited about this box. At first we just left it in the classroom and the children did indeed crawl inside it! It was a fort, and a tunnel, and a bear cave and the “Bat” cave for Batman! The parents came in the classroom for the next few days to find out what all the excitiement was about! We were asked, “Who is Re Bo?” The children had been sharing stories at home about their exciting adventures in Re Bo!
One of the parents donated another, not as large, box for the classroom to accompany Re Bo. It was a moving box. We named it Mo Bo (short for Moving Box!).
With this much excitement, we decided that Re Bo needed to hit the Social Media scene. I’m not kidding – we started a Facebook page for Re Bo. We decided to post about Re Bo’s origins and the changes it went through in our classroom. Re Bo, at the highlight of it’s social media frenzy, had over 50 Facebook fans!
Here are a few of Re Bo’s adventures:
Re Bo became a rocket ship for our Space Theme:
Complete with a porthole for children to look out from! Here is the inside of the rocket ship:
I can’t find the pictures of the ‘Control Board” but the children hot glued milk caps and other loose parts to a piece of cardboard to use as the controls.
Re Bo became the backdrop for our Christmas Theme Play:
And Mo Bo became part of the play as well:
Re Bo had a very adventurous life in preschool, albeit only 6 months! I no longer have the log in credentials for its Facebook page. However, Facebook does keep Re Bo alive by sending me birthday reminders each year!
All this is a reminder to think outside the box when planning for your preschoolers, unless you have boxes donated to you. Then, ALWAYS, think inside the box!
What have you done with boxes in your classroom?