I am pretty sure all moms can relate to broken toys and loose parts situation. I always feel like I shouldn't throw them away, because I know there must be 'a second life' for those lonely pieces.
So after our junk drawer was almost full we decided to make something out of it. And look what we came up with!
A SPY TOY BOX!
How we made the Spy Toy Box
1. We used firmer cardboard box from the tablet we bought last year. It was perfect because it had a cover and a good size to carry around.
2. We glued all the selected pieces to the bottom of the box. We used Elmer's All Purpose Glue-All Max.
3. I created this poster and glued it on top of the box. You are welcome to use mine if you like it.
Spy Toy Printable
What to put in your Spy Toy Box
Sky is the limit here. In my case it was the "junk drawer" (in which I kept putting things that don't have use for anymore). Try to choose smaller pieces in different colors. Also, it depends on what you have, but it would be great if you could include something with letters, numbers and different shapes. This would make this game more educational.
How to play with this Spy Toy
We start like this:
I spy with my little eye something green and square. Can you find it?
I spy with my little eye something yummy. Can you find it?
I spy with my little eye number 5. Can you see it?
Then the kids created new ways how to play with this box:
- they closed their eyes and touched the parts. They had to guess what was they were touching. I thought that was genius! It was a really great motor skills activity + it was a good sensory practice.
- they also turned it into a storytelling activity. They started a story with: 'once upon a time" and then each child would pick an item and would have to go on with a story. I have heard some hilarious stories about blue paper clip that concurred AAA battery with the help of one doll leg.
Why I love "Spy Toy Box"
- it costs you nothing to make it (if you have glue at home already)
- you recycle and up-cycle unused stuff from the house
- kids could help making it
- it could make sweet DIY gift for kids
- it's a perfect toy for quiet/calm time in the afternoon when the younger sibling is taking a nap
- we took this toy on a road trip last weekend and it worked wonders.
- and of course kids love it
Check out other homemade toys we made. They are all up-cycled and recycled 🙂
Theres Just One Mommy says
What a fun use for all those broken and lost pieces!
Lisa Chappa says
This is awesome! When I worked at a children's museum we made a table like this. Just fill it with poured resin. Then we made cards with different things listed on each one so the children could be looking for different things. Fun!
Vicky Davis says
I also save everything, thinking I will find another use for it, but have never thought of such a creative up-cycle idea before
Birute Efe says
Thank you, Vicky. It feels good to know that I am not only person who doesn't throw away broken pieces.
I'm sure you have been nominated already and I hope you don't mind but I have nominated you for the Liebster Award, find out more here http://ourlittlehouseinthecountry.com/2014/05/07/liebster-award/
I really like the way you put this together. It is so colorful and appealing. We have a lot of little toys that my son has outgrown--you have got me thinking 🙂 This would actually make a great gift as well. Pinned, also sharing.
Birute Efe says
Thank you, Sheila. hope you guys get to make it.
What a great idea! I edited an old post of mine to link to this idea 🙂 http://swoodsonsays.com/4-ways-to-give-old-broken-toys-new-life/
Niki M. says
What do I do with bits and bobs? I use them with playdough. I have a massive box full of random items. They go into the playdough to create all different things! We have marbles, pom poms, cookie cutters, random Halloween things, sticks, shells, scoops. You name it. We use it in many different ways. I do like this idea. I recently made a similar thing for the airplane trip in the future with a bunch of random items photographed on a board. I also like to see what she comes up with, make sensory boxes with coloured rice and popping corn. For valentines day I did one with all things red and romantic, so I put glass pebbles, a red glass candle holder, a red beaded necklace, red cookie cutters and heart shapes and she spends hours playing with them. Spoons and scoops are great too, shells, sticks etc. same goes for Xmas with ornaments, wooden Xmas trees, all in rice. Lots of language!
Birute Efe says
Wow. Niki. You have plenty of amazing ideas. I love the one you said with photographs. That's perfect for trips. Do you have a blog? If not, you should 🙂
Jennifer L C says
I just want to say thank you. I'm a single mother of a handsome 6 yo boy. Unfortunately do to injury I lost my job so any games that are at no cost are worth a lot to me. I know myself and my son Noah will like playing too. Thanks.