We believe in providing our children with many different materials that are considered “loose parts” because this opens a door to creativity and imagination. Children are able to create things out of loose parts that us as adults would never think of and this creates opportunities to learn in so many different ways.
In a preschool, loose parts are materials that can be moved, carried,combined, redesigned, lined up, and taken apart and put back together in multiple ways.
They are materials with no specific set of directions that can be used alone or combined with other materials.
- Loose parts can be used anyway children choose.
- Loose parts can be adapted and manipulated in many ways.
- Loose parts encourage creativity and imagination.
- Loose parts develop more skill and competence than most modern plastic toys
- Loose parts can be used in many different ways
- Loose parts can be used in combination with other materials to support imagination
- Loose parts encourage open ended learning.
- Children choose loose parts over fancy toys.
Here is a sample of one way loose parts was used by a child in the Wonderland Room:
“This flower lives with the princesses and the princesses make it special because they put sparkles. They shake the flower and it makes it even more glittery. It makes it really shiny and it turns into a diamond because it is really special. This is Angelina.”