As you can see one child has used blocks to make a "road" for his cars and the other child is using trees and other props to make a "train" on the tracks. Both of these children though outside the "box" in their play, these are skills that will be very useful for the rest of a child's life.
There are ways parents can initiate activities that encourage our children to “think outside the box.” These are word games we can play in the course of our everyday activities that are not only fun for us and our children, but also encourage curiosity, creativity, and imagination:
- Ask a child to think of as many things as he or she can think of that you can do with a paper clip, pencil, or napkin.
- When riding in the car, play games like finding how many houses have For Sale signs, front porches, or identify particular car models that you see passing by.
- After watching a TV program together, talk about the story and characters, what did you like and not like about them.
- Watch some ads on TV and criticize them.
- Make up new endings to stories you have just read. (excerpt from David Elkind, PhD. Learning Through Play).
Deborah K. Howell, Assistant Director