In these times of economic hardship, the play needs and natural urge to play for children will remain. Play activity doesn’t need to cost lots of money or involve expensive toys or days out. There are many ‘free and found’ play opportunities that can take place within homes, communities, and settings.
Often the most effective types of play come through the use of free and found materials, also known as loose parts. Loose parts are any items that children can use for play. They are resources that can be moved about, manipulated and adapted, and will provide high levels of flexibility and choice for children. There are endless possibilities for how loose parts can be used and there is no right or wrong way to use them. They encourage creativity and imagination and develop more skill and competence than most modern plastic toys.
This resource provides some cheap play activities for each of the 16 play types identified and outlined by Bob Hughes. The play ideas can be used indoors and out and can make play possible in times of hardship within homes, communities, schools, childcare, play and youth settings.