8 Ways to Play with a Cardboard Box

Despite owning ALL THE TOYS my children love playing with cardboard boxes. Whether that's in the house during awful weather or in the garden in the sun. Here's a list of 8 things we've managed to do with an old cardboard box.

1) Draw on it
I don't know why sitting in a box and drawing on it is better than drawing on paper, but apparently it is.

I think this was a drawing of an airplane over the sea.

One of our more heavily adorned boxes. Jackson Pollock inspired, I'm sure.

2) Make a robot costume
One day in the garden my daughter wanted to be a robot. Your wish is my command!

Cardboard robot costume, accompanied by excellent robot face.

3) Pretend it's a vehicle
Whether they are pretending it's a boat, car, train, airplane, truck, bus, tractor, or something else, the kids can spend ages playing imaginatively, whilst sitting in a boring old brown box.

I mean, could they look any happier in their cardboard car?

4) Turn it into a Post Box
I stuck a slot in the front of a box, covered it in red paper, gave the kids loads of old paper, blank cards, envelopes, leaflets, pens and pencils, and a few stickers for “stamps”. They kept themselves entertained for ages drawing pictures, making cards and invitations, and writing letters, then posting them.

5) Make it snow
On it’s way to the recycle bin, a small battered up cardboard box was commandeered by my 4year old daughter who said she was going to use it to “make it snow”. In July. On a day when it was about 27 degrees. When it hadn’t even rained for weeks, as you can tell by the state of my lawn, never mind snowed.

Making it snow mainly consisted of ripping the box to shreds and throwing it around the garden!

6) Make a Memory Box
We had a small shoebox lying around that my daughter has claimed to store postcards, special birthday and Christmas cards she receives, and any little drawings her friends have given her. It lives underneath her wardrobe and I’m sure she’ll have fun going through it In years to come. 

7) Build Fairy Land
Using a brown box, some other pieces of cardboard, the contents of the craft box, and a lot of imagination, my daughter created Fairy Land. This was very much a labour of love and a project that was added to over the course of a few weeks over the summer holidays. Good job we have a little extra space in the kitchen to accommodate the Fairy Land creation space! 

Fairy land made from a cardboard box

8) Make a puppet theatre
My daughter had a friend coming around to play after school one day, and I’d spotted some little colour your own puppets in The Works that I thought would keep them entertained for a while. I cut a hole in the front of the box to create a theatre and added some bits of felt for curtains. The girls decorated the box and puppets, we made some more puppets with card and lolly sticks, and they put on a puppet show for me.

Colour in puppets

Puppet theatre


Have you tried any of these or do you have any other ideas? What’s your favourite way to make use of the humble cardboard box?

8 ways to play with a cardboard box