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Parenting Tip of the Month

Click here to view our January Parenting Tip, "Inspiring Imagination with Recycled Materials," or see below.


Inspiring Imagination with Recycled Materials

childrenboxadventureDuring the winter season, many children spend more time indoors and need activities that are entertaining and promote learning. As the excitement of the holiday gifts wears off, families will need new and inexpensive ideas to engage their children. One solution is to offer activities that encourage imagination and creativity. When children use their imagination, they grow their understanding of how things work, explore new possibilities, and develop problem-solving skills. Parents can support their child’s imagination by creating everyday items found in your home.

Here are some easy activities to inspire new creations with your child:

fathersonreading 1 Cardboard Box Activities
If you enjoy ordering online or exchanged gifts over the holidays, you may have a lot of cardboard boxes around your home. A cardboard box can be used in many ways to inspire your child’s creativity. The box can be used as a surface to paint or draw on or as an easel that paper is attached to. Additionally, the box can be decorated and turned into a castle, car, or anything else your child imagines. For more ideas with cardboard boxes visit Child's Play ABC by clicking here.
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Let the Good Times Roll

Toilet paper or paper towel rolls are also versatile and can be used in many ways. They can be dipped in paint to make circular prints or several rolls can be taped together to make long tunnels for cars, balls, or marbles to race through. If your child enjoys singing and dancing, turn your toilet paper tube into maracas. Click here to learn how to make toilet paper roll maracas.

Another fun activity to create and enjoy is an easy bird feeder. Click here to watch a short video on YouTube to learn how.
550 102117189 1 Reuse Crayons for DIY "Crayon Cookies"!
If you have small children, chances are you have many broken crayons. A great way to reuse all those crayons is to turn them into crayon cookies. These multicolored crayons can add a new experience to coloring. Click here for the recipe.
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Five Cereal Box Activities for Little Ones
Cereal boxes make a great surface to glue items onto. Just cut the box out and provide your child a collage of items to glue, such as strips of construction paper, fabric, newspaper ads, yarn, tissue paper, greeting cards, and other items found in your drawers. For more activities with cereal boxes click here.

sfit fitbackcover1709 ci 1 1 Construction with Cardboard
Many children love to build tall structures. Help your child gather boxes and cardboard rolls of different sizes to use for their new construction. You can help them extend the activity by encouraging them to decorate with paint, stickers, or wrapping paper. To learn how you can use toilet paper rolls to build with click here.
If you have cardboard egg cartons in your home, click here to learn how to build with egg cartons.
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For more ideas on inspiring imagination and creativity with recycled materials based on your child’s grade level visit at

cheerful mother daughter reading book near sofa 1 Some materials used to create with may be considered choking hazards and not appropriate for children under three. If Items are small enough to fit inside a toilet paper roll, they are considered a choking hazard and will require close supervision.

Happy Upcycling!  

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