Imaginations run wild and free when given the opportunity. I always have found it impressive when kids can use their creative minds to turn ordinary objects like spoons or shoes into fascinating toys or characters in full-blown stories.
It has been said that the more a toy does, the less the child learns. We’ve all used them--the action figures that talk and light up and release wings or weapons with the push of a button. They are fun! But they are also limited because of their extravagant features. That toy is only one thing. One character.
For years, the toys voted as kids’ favorites are sticks and boxes. They don’t light up. They don’t recite movie quotes. But, they can be anything! A stick is a sword, a violin bow, a light saber, a walking cane, a twirling baton, an extra long arm, etc. A box is a time machine, a boat, a rocket, a cage, a house, a bed. There is no limit to the creative possibilities when a child (or adult) is given what are called “loose parts”. Legos, blocks, tangrams, sticks and boxes are not assigned roles. They morph to fulfill the imaginative desires of the child.