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Loose Parts

Published on August 31, 2018 under Winter

The best play experiences are initiated by children. They make the decision what they want to play , how they want to play it and how long ….

Some toys are closed ended. They have one use and leave little to the imagination.

Loose parts are open ended. It is whatever the child decides it should be. Today it was those colorful pendants again.

We’ve already had one blog post about the party the kids created with them after we took them down from open house.

Today it was a party 🎉 again and you could just see the community the children were building.

At one point they moved their party into the playhouse from the yard.

At one point it was even a dragon with a long tail.

Loose parts play can be tricky. Everyone might have different ideas on how things should go. Alas , we learn that way too. We learn how to play , plan ,negotiate , be frustrated and recover.

Being a kid is hard work.

If you have loose parts you want to donate to us please drop them here .

I know you’ve wondered what it’s for !

Here are some ideas from

Organic Materials


Wood (sticks, stumps, boards, coins, branches, wood chips, cinnamon stick, pegs, beads)


Dirt (mud, sand, clay)

Water (ice, snow)

Seeds (acorns, nuts, dried beans, seed pods)

Pine cones


Grasses (hay, straw)


Flowers (petals)

Textiles (hemp, cotton, wool, felt, silk)


Sea sponges

Recycled and Reused Materials

Paper (newspaper, shredded, cardboard, paper tubes)

Containers (milk jugs, yogurt containers, metal cans)

Textiles (sheets, shower curtains, blankets, towels, pillows)

Ropes (used climbing ropes)

Tires (inner tubes)


PVC tubes


Nuts and bolts


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