Avoid Making Loose Parts Less Loose

In his original October 1971 article outlining the Theory of Loose Parts, Simon Nicholson, explains that loose parts are variables in an environment that spark inventiveness, creativity, and discovery. These environmental variables--ranging from pretty shells, to loose bricks, to seagulls--serve as springboards for explorations, props for play, and tools for discovery. They help children unspool … Continue reading Avoid Making Loose Parts Less Loose

Dismantling A Play Space: Having The Feels

I'm generally not a sentimental or emotional kinda guy, but this afternoon I came down with a case of The Feels.

For nearly 25 years, the yard on the south side of my home was a children's play space. First for my children, then for the kids in our family child care program, then for my granddaughter and grandson. Last fall, the grand kids and their parents moved out of our house and into their own--4.5 hours away.

Loose Parts Play

According to Nicholson, loose parts are variables, and in his eyes, the, "definition goes beyond open-ended materials to include phenomena such as music, gravity, and playing with words, concepts and ideas and much more. This is considerably broader than natural, junk and recycled materials. We need to be mindful of the breadth of possibilities."