I like the natural building blocks not only do they look beautiful they also help bring nature and natural learning inside the home.
They help so much with hand, eye coordination, strategy, creative thinking and imaginative play.
Another reason I like natural blocks is you can also use them to create beautiful small world scenes and incorporate them in so many different play scenes.
these are a must in my opinion for open ended play, in fact these were the very first thing I bought at the start of our open ended play journey.
they are amazing. They can be used as many things, dressing up (they can be, capes, scarfs, hats, dresses, skirts) landscapes for your small world scenes. Decorative, blankets for dolls. It really is one of those items that your little ones imagination just runs wild with. Some colours I recommend getting are green (grass) blue (Water) orange (fire) Brown (mud).
Grimms rainbow 🌈
These are very popular and there’s a good reason why. Not only do they look beautiful they can be used in many different ways. Your little ones can stack them, create homes with them for toy animals, make ball runs with them. It encourages creative thinking, problem solving and imaginative play and colour recognition. You can eventually add some extras to them as well like the semi circles by grimms which can turn your rainbow into houses or apartments as my wee one likes to say.
So these are wooden dolls, They don’t have faces so this helps your child’s imagination . We have coloured nins and this helps with colour recognition for the younger ones. I also like the fact they are made out of one solid piece of wood so they aren’t really a choking hazard which is great for my 9 month old who is at that mouthing stage. they are played with almost everyday. I have the 7 friends in cups by grimms and the grapat nins and they are both beautifuly made.
I have had a chalk board since Bella was about 1 and a half. She always comes back to it, it is such a must for creative play. The child learns so much from drawing and also she uses it to imaginative play such as pretending she is a teacher or an artist ect. I also give her a bowl of water and a was cloth and she gets to clean her board herself which is great practical life skills.
Loose parts play
These range from pebbles, pine cones, feathers, Pom poms ect grapat has a beautiful range of loose part play items we like the grapat rings and coins as they are a safe size for my littlest. The reason I like loose part play is your child can play with them in so many different ways. Pine cone soup making pretty Mandela’s creating treasure baskets. Also the different textures are great for sensory learning and shapes and size recognition.
I hope this helps to give you an idea of where to start in the world of open ended play. I wanted to also mention I will be doing more blogs based on education and learning through play and Waldorf style education and a bit of Montessori blogs.