As loose parts, magnifying glasses (aka hand lenses) are bound to spark exploratory play and inquisitiveness.
Combine the loose part water with the loose part cold for long enough and you get a third loose part: ice. Kids in some parts of the world can engage with ice in its natural environment during the winter months but thanks to technology, ice play can take place on the warmest of days in the hottest of locations with a little planning.
Now nearly extinct, these technological dinosaurs once roamed freely through classrooms and conference centers. Abandoned for fancier technology by most of the educational system, overhead projectors are still a nifty loose part that’ll spice things up in an early learning setting.
Wood chips and wood shavings are amazing loose parts available in many colors, textures, and sizes. Children invite these little hunks of wood into all kinds of play and exploration. Kids dig in them, haul them, throw them, kick them, use them as props in dramatic play and small world play, and more.