220 Appendix A
If your child
loves: (S)He may be
exploring Loose Parts
Natural Loose Parts
Forts, hide and seek,
putting toys to bed,
burying items in
sand, wrapping pres-
ents, eggs and nests,
hats, being inside
cupboards, painting
entire canvas, Lego
enclosures Enclosing/
Enveloping Scarves, fabric, lace, towels,
boxes, spools, paper towels,
tissue paper, mailer tubes,
solo cups, aluminum foil, foam
pieces, folding steamer basket,
plastic Easter eggs, locks
and keys, hinges, hair rollers,
sponges, nesting baskets,
tissue paper, ribbons, yarn,
plaster cloth, cheese cloth, toilet
paper, Claycrete paper mache,
Paperclay Piles of leaves, sand, mud,
clay, walnut halves, clam shells,
pine spills, dirt, palm branches,
geodes, seed pods, flowers,
petals, straw, pea stone, twigs,
nests, hollow logs, leather hides,
birch bark, hollowed or halved
coconut shells, pumpkins,
gourds, lotus pods, corn husks,
giant leaves
Elevators, balls,
towers, dropping
objects on purpose,
scribbling up and
down, building tall
towers Dynamic Vertical
Scarves, beanbags, pompoms,
cushions, string, rope, spools,
beads, foam balls, ping-pong
balls, corks, wire, bean bags,
watering can, tea pot, slinky,
confetti, blocks for stacking,
spools, paper clips, dice, dom-
inoes, light switches, chains,
springs, barrel bolts
Rocks for stacking, pinecones,
water, feathers, sticks, helicop-
ter pods, leaves, acorns, crab
apples, hanging vines, icicles,
palm branches, wood pieces for
stacking Speed racers, traffic,
running laps, trains,
scribbling left and
right, tennis, bowling,
clapping, waving
flags, vacuums, lawn
mowers, tunnels,
pushing strollers,
building roads, shak-
ers, swordplay
Dynamic Horizontal
Balls, marbles, level blocks for
making roads, ribbons, wooden
rings, rain gutters, clotheslines
and clothespins, streamers,
wires, strings, beads, half-pipes,
elastics Logs, trenches in the sand,
branches and palm fronds,
pliable branches for building
tunnels, sand and streams,
timothy hay, flat rocks or ice
chunks for launching, chestnuts,
waste apples
Putting trucks
upside down, turning
knobs on stereo and
appliances, planets,
baseball, racetracks,
CDs, launching toys
that roll, spinning
in circles, washing
machines Rotation/
Circularity Jacks, plates, pot lids, wood
rings, spools, washers, metal
rings, rope, string, lasso, sticks,
toilet plungers, paper towel
holders, cylindrical blocks,
short lengths of pipe, nuts and
bolts, screws, martini umbrellas,
metal bearings, mixing spoons,
whisks, hair rollers, loops of
tubing or pipes, serger spools,
bobbins, paint roller, hinges
Helicopter pods, swinging vines,
star anise, rolly pollies, daisies,
snowballs, tree rounds with a
centre hole, acorns, snail shells,
coconut shells, water, stepping
stones or stumps arranged in a
circle, hills for rolling down

Loose Parts and Intelligent Playthings Categorized by Schema
221 Recyclable/
Repurposed Additional Tools/
Bases Commercial Toys/
Gifts *
Cardboard boxes,
stacks of tires,
tents, long tree
limbs (for forts),
blankets, tarps,
tables, chairs,
couch cushions,
pallets, cylindrical
concrete forms,
plastic culverts,
haystacks, ball pit
Fabric remnants, old hats
and shawls, belts, watches,
plastic containers, cups,
electrical wire, cardboard
tubes, egg cartons, enve-
lope discards from card
stores, wrapping paper,
newsprint, magazines,
bubble wrap
Clothes pins, safety pins,
rubber bands, string, tape,
Velcro tape, twist ties, mag-
nifying glass, Washi tape,
Mod Podge, Silly Putty
Magnatiles, Russian nesting
dolls, stacking cups, Lego,
Brik-a-block, crazy forts,
sleeping bag, igloo mold,
skipping rope, mosaic kit,
piggy bank, piñata, doll
clothes, latches board,
hollow blocks, mailbox,
excavation kit
Stacks of tires,
platforms, chairs,
ladders, walls, tree
trunks, fences,
couch cushions,
cylindrical concrete
forms, trampoline,
dumbwaiter, fireman
pole, deep hole,
water pump
PVC pipes, wrapping paper
tubes, Pringles chip contain-
ers, K-cups, yogurt cups,
cans, zippers, tissue boxes,
Yop bottles, solo cups,
empty boxes, straws, coiled
telephone cords
Plumb line, retractable tape
measure, pulleys and ropes
with bucket, small hand
winch, mashers, mortar and
pestle, funnel, turkey baster,
hour glass, thermometer
Connect 4, stacking toys,
hammer and peg set,
bead maze, toy elevator,
parachute men, rocket kits,
skipping rope, ball & jacks,
trampoline, Ogodisk, Micro
Shotz, Stomp Rockets,
Jacob’s ladder
Logs, hula hoops,
culvert pipes,
shallow ditches,
planks, 4x4’s,
curbs, stepping
stones, rain gutters,
concrete forms,
balls & bottles for
bowling, parachute,
shopping cart,
skateboard, stroller,
wheelbarrow, bike,
hockey stick, golf
club Pipes, wrapping paper
tubes, rubber bands, inner
tubes, physio bands, bear-
ings, wheels, corrugated
roofing Level tables, hardwood
floors, long cardboard
boxes, fences or pallets for
attaching gutters and pipes,
preattached horizontal
cables or lines, slingshot
Hot wheels, train sets,
push toys, abacus, windup
toys, ride-on toys, marble
run, sports equipment, air
hockey table
Cylindrical concrete
form, plastic culvert
pipes, swings, cable
spools, round hay
bales, freestanding
poles and trunks for
circling, hula hoop,
pop-up hamper or
tunnel, merry-go-
round, barrel, hose
reel, Archimedes
screw pump
Cylindrical containers, paper
tubes, old microwave trays/
tracks, bottles, castors,
motors, knobs off old appli-
ances, roller blade wheels
& bolts, cups, spinners
from board games, turn
table, round cardboard from
frozen pizza, paper plates,
bobbins Large round bowls, steel
drum, fan, compasses,
winch, pottery wheels, lazy
susan, rotating organizer,
salad spinner, dowels and
sticks, hamster wheel,
clothes for toy washing
machine, drill, screwdriver,
auger, mixer, blender
Snap Circuits, Train circuit,
gear toys, bead maze, spiral
ball run, abacus, Magnea-
tos, tops, toy cement
mixer, propeller flyers,
skipping rope, water wheel,
spirograph, Euler’s Disk,
Gearation magnets, spin art,
rock tumbler
Large Play