147+ Loose Parts Ideas to Inspire your Child's Play - Sticks & Stones Education

147+ Loose Parts Ideas to Inspire your Child's Play

147+ Loose Parts Ideas to Inspire your Child's Play

In this article, you'll find an ever growing list of loose parts play ideas that I love and have used over the years in my many classrooms. I know you and your children or students will love them too.

I started my original blog on loose parts with a little blurb and 50 loose parts ideas ... but I've come to realise I need more than one blog on this topic so I'm writing a whole new blog, and making this one! An expansive lis of ideas to inspire children's learning and of course your teaching and resourcing of children's learning spaces. It doesn't matter whether it's home, preschool or school or an early learning service - there are loose parts galore for you to choose from. 

natural loose parts for children's loose parts play
Over 147+ Loose Parts Play Ideas for Young Children

  1. Colourful scarves from a thrift store
  2. Scarves in neutral and earthy tones
  3. Play silks
  4. Colourful fabric scraps
  5. Neutral earthy tones fabric scraps
  6. Napkin Rings
  7. Curtain rings
  8. Bracelets and bangles
  9. Wooden discs
  10. Drink coasters
  11. Polished stones
  12. Polished pebbles
  13. Small sticks collected from gardens
  14. Ribbon pieces
  15. Yarn and Wool pieces
  16. Hand made pom poms in colourful arrangements or neutral and earthy tones
  17. Christmas tree decorations
  18. Pieces of natural rope and sisal
  19. Pieces of twine
  20. Large beads from broken jewelry
  21. Small cutting boards
  22. Feathers
  23. Wooden golf tees
  24. Bells
  25. Dice
  26. Wooden craft pieces
  27. Wooden spools
  28. Sea shells
  29. Glass stones
  30. Wooden letters
  31. Bottle corks
  32. Mini branch tree cookies
  33. Cardboard cylinders
  34. Cardboard tubes
  35. Small gift boxes
  36. Wooden dowel
  37. Wooden bowls
  38. Small wooden blocks
  39. Small colourful felted wool pom poms
  40. Wool felt river stones
  41. Buttons
  42. Wooden utensils
  43. Small fabric scraps
  44. Wooden peg dolls
  45. Dolly pegs
  46. Wooden clothes pegs
  47. Felt pieces
  48. Raffia
  49. Small draw string bags
  50. Natural sponges
  51. Cellulose sponge pieces
  52. Decorative cardboard straws
  53. Wooden spoons, forks, knives
  54. Acorns
  55. Pinecones
  56. Corkscrew willow branches
  57. Small wicker baskets
  58. Jute twine
  59. Puzzle pieces
  60. Cloth napkins
  61. Scented potpourri
  62. Buttons of different shapes and sizes
  63. Metal nuts and bolts
  64. Old keys
  65. Beaded necklaces
  66. Scrabble tiles
  67. Alphabet magnets
  68. Wine corks
  69. Popsicle sticks
  70. Miniature figurines
  71. Paper clips
  72. Marbles
  73. Cotton balls
  74. Shells and sea glass
  75. Craft feathers
  76. Plastic bottle caps
  77. Plastic containers and lids
  78. Small paper bags
  79. Wine corks
  80. Wooden clothespins
  81. Stamps and ink pads
  82. Small mirrors
  83. Miniature animals and dinosaurs
  84. LEGO bricks
  85. Wooden beads
  86. Jigsaw puzzle pieces
  87. Miniature cars and vehicles
  88. Rubber bands
  89. Wooden dowels
  90. Foam shapes
  91. Small metal bells
  92. Plastic animals
  93. Pencil erasers
  94. Beads on a string
  95. Plastic army men
  96. Scented candles
  97. Costume jewelry
  98. Small baskets
  99. Wine corks
  100. Plastic straws
  101. Small plastic or wooden animals
  102. Acrylic gemstones
  103. Magnetic letters and numbers
  104. Miniature glass bottles
  105. Stickers of various shapes and designs
  106. Clothesline pins
  107. Paper clips in different colors
  108. Small, decorative bells
  109. Wine corks with attached corkscrews
  110. Old, broken jewelry pieces
  111. Cork coasters
  112. Wine glass charms
  113. Rubber stamps
  114. Paper doilies
  115. Wooden curtain clips
  116. Leather scraps
  117. Large seashells
  118. Miniature figurines from board games
  119. Felt balls
  120. Scented soap bars
  121. Plastic army men
  122. Miniature food replicas
  123. Scraps of tulle fabric
  124. Beaded curtain strands
  125. Small tassels
  126. Glass beads
  127. Popsicle sticks with notches
  128. Paper straws
  129. Wine foil wrappers
  130. Brass or metal washers130. Jigsaw puzzle pieces
  131. Cork coasters
  132. Glass marbles
  133. Faux fur fabric remnants
  134. Empty thread spools
  135. Wine bottle labels
  136. CD pieces
  137. Paper fans
  138. Small plastic dinosaurs
  139. Old coins
  140. Wooden clothes hangers
  141. Vintage keys
  142. Miniature street signs
  143. Plastic fruit and vegetables
  144. Clothes buttons with intricate designs
  145. Small photo frames
  146. Scraps of leather or suede
  147. Miniature traffic signs
  148. Old postcards
  149. Tourist themed coasters from other countries


What is Loose Parts Play and Why is it Important for Children's Development?

Early Years Learning Framework (EYLF) The official document outlining the EYLF's principles and outcomes.

BOOK:  Loose Parts: Inspiring Play in Young Children

BOOK:  Loose Parts 2 - Inspiring Play with Infants and Toddlers by Lisa Daly, Miriam Beloglovsky. 

BOOK:  Loose Parts 3 Inspiring Culturally Sustainable Environments

BOOK:  Loose Parts 4   Inspiring 21st Century Learning 

Loose Parts Play: A Powerful Way to Ignite Creativity  - An insightful article on the benefits of loose parts play.

The Hundred Languages of Children: The Reggio Emilia Approach A book discussing the Reggio Emilia Approach's philosophy, which aligns with loose parts play.

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