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Loose Parts

How many of you are thinking loose Parts? "What is she on about ?" :). Loose parts are basically items that can be moved, re-designed, put together and taken apart in a variety of ways. Children use loose parts to create endless possibilities and invite all kinds of provocations. The "Theory of Loose parts" was created in 19271 by Simon Nicolson.

Loose parts can be made up of natural or man-made materials, some examples are:

  • Bricks
  • Tree stumps
  • Pipes
  • Stones
  • Branches/twigs
  • Tyers
  • Pots & Pans
  • Material

The list can be endless, loose parts can be used inside or outside. Loose parts also sit really well into National Quality Standards, as they are a great way to bring more natural resources into your centre both indoors and outdoors, it is also a great way of incorporating and embedding Reuse / Recycling into your programs. Below are some great images to give you inspiration

From the blog of "Let the children play" Jenny gives us great reason on why we should use loose parts

There are many reasons why play spaces should include a multitude of loose parts, including:

  • Loose parts can be used in any way children choose.
  • Loose parts can be adapted and manipulated in many ways.
  • Loose parts encourage creativity and imagination.
  • Loose parts develop more skill and competence than most modern plastic toys
  • Loose parts can be used in many different ways
  • Loose parts can be used in combination with other materials to support imagination
  • Loose parts encourage open ended learning.
  • Children choose loose parts over fancy toys.

Pinterest is a great resource for ideas, here is one great pinterest page with lots of ideas of loose parts on it.

I hope this has got you all thinking on how to either start incorporating loose parts, or how to further your loose parts collection. I would love to hear stories of how people are using loose parts at their childcare centre, please go to our facebook page and share your stories

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