What’s a Rainy Day Bookshelf? It is a special collection of materials saved for, you know … rainy (or snowy or stormy) days. It is a great way to help beat the “I’m bored” when cabin fever strikes.
The purpose is to spark your child’s imagination, but also give you a way to reconnect without screens. On that “shelf,” you’ll likely find books, but there will probably be other things, too.
- Crayons, markers, pens or pencils
- Paper of various kinds and colors
- Old magazines or catalogs
- notebooks or notepads (like the 1/2 used spiral notebooks from school)
When my daughter was young, I kept a bunch of her favorite picture books that she had “outgrown” on the shelf. I also had a bin with crafty stuff, too: pipe cleaners, feathers, leftover yarn, embroidery thread, and fabric, felt, and a box of buttons (Thanks, Grandma!). I also tried to keep a few cardboard rolls and a shoebox or two. Essentially, it was a mini-activity center that I kept in the closet as something “new” to do when the weather (or illness) was getting us down.
Bottom line: A rainy day bookshelf can be what you want it to be.
I remembered our Rainy Day Bookshelf the other day when I was reading two books in the 51 Things To Make series:
What I love about both books is the variety of projects and the potential for kids to let loose with their imagination. There are plenty of creatures you can create and play with (!), as well as interesting structures. The Cardboard Boxes book includes a project on building a desk organizer (hello, Father’s Day!). There are simpler projects that a preschooler can handle and more sophisticated projects for a second or third grader.
Teachers and Librarians: Quite a few of the projects have classroom potential for social studies, science, math, and language arts.
With 51 Things to Make With Cardboard Boxes, there are projects with every type of cardboard container, from tissue boxes and paper towel rolls to round boxes and corrugated cardboard. Without a place to store them, this book isn’t as easy to manage as 51 Projects to Make with Paper Plates.
The other downside is the lack of patterns or templates to copy. If you find that extra level of instruction helpful – and there are several projects with unusual shapes to be made – it could be frustrating.
Overall, I would recommend these books. Borrow at the library first to see if they are a good fit for you and your child.
51 Things to Make with Cardboard Boxes
by Fiona Hayes
51 Things to Make with Paper Plates
by Fiona Hayes
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