Autumn, railways and creativity: ideas to enhance your role-plays
Autumn has just arrived, bringing its beautiful colours with it!
This season is enjoyable for playing outside, but the frequent rains can force us to stay home. Don’t worry mom. You can carry a little autumn indoors. How? You can bring home some natural elements for your children to play with.
The idea is to invite a child to play, providing opportunities to explore some skills or concepts, like seasons, in this case, combining natural materials with toys that usually stimulate creativity and role-play.
Trains and railways, for instance, are ideal to combine with autumn.
This playtime is a great opportunity for children to move away from screens. They can discover the world and the changing seasons (with their features and products) without the filter of a digital device.
Autumn and trains: best invitation to play
Wooden trains and railways belong in the timeless toy category. Indeed, they have a great fascination for children of all generations. Putting the pieces together to create the rails is so fun, as well as it is moving the trains, pretending to be the driver or station master.
Moreover, playing with trains is much more than having fun, because it brings many benefits for your little ones. It improves hand-eye coordination while putting the pieces together. It involves the ability to find relations among parts to figure out how to make a circular track. It improves vocabulary and storytelling while children pretend to be a character of the play or describe an action. It also trains lifelong skills like problem solving and improvisation when an unexpected event appears.
Trains and railways can become more creative with ancillary natural elements, which allow children to find new ways to assemble tracks and build cities while training their imagination.
Let’ see together three ways of mixing autumn elements and trains!
Build beautiful scenarios with dried leaves
With a train and a pile of leaves, you can set an appealing invitation to play in a few seconds. Despite its simplicity, it is so fun and engaging. First, children can explore the leaves to learn their feel, smell, and sound, turning the activity into sensory play.
Then, if you set the trains near a pile of leaves, it becomes any landscape children can imagine. What about creating hills and valleys for travellers of a passenger train to admire? Your little one can pretend to be a passenger seduced by the best landscape ever!
Loading seasonal fruits
Choo! Choo! A cargo train is coming to town, and it is full of tasty fruit!
A cargo train toy becomes more realistic if it transports things in the containers for real. Chestnuts, grapes, nuts are very demanded goods in the autumn period.
People are waiting for their cargo, and your children have to deliver it! Once the pretend play is settled, your children should put the fruit on the train containers for starting the delivery.
This playtime gives them a lot of fun, but it is also an occasion to reflect on the concept of seasonality. It is a fun way for children to learn that every season comes with some products and that it is normal to do not find chestnuts all year round.
In addition, the autumn fruit cargo train can be an invitation for children to have a healthy snack. During this engaging playtime, they will probably feel in the mood to try new tastes.
Decorate train track with Halloween theme
We celebrate Halloween in October. Why don’t you use this occasion to propose collaborative creative work? With some imagination, pumpkins, leaves, and stones can become an ornament for creating the best Halloween railways scenario for the best role-play ever!
Here there are some simple ideas to celebrate Halloween.
Pumpkins: you can help your child carve it to make a mountain with a tunnel to the little train go through. What about putting it on the left or right side of the train set below to create the natural background of the city station?
By using an ice-cream scoop, you can make some little pumpkin balls with the flesh. Children usually enjoy placing them as if they were in a pumpkin patch. They can make the railway builder set even more engaging!
Sticks: children can create some trees to allocate in the scenario. They can use sticks, tying them with lace or twine. It is fine engineering work, but don’t put limits on children’s creativity!
Stones: they are suitable for making the unfaltering Halloween ghost family (other roles to play). Having available oval stones of different sizes would be ideal. Use the larger one as the base to stack a smaller one. Once two medium-sized stones are arranged to create the ghost body, the next step is to cover it with a handkerchief. Don’t forget to draw a ghost face with dark eyes and a scary smile!
These last are only a few examples of a possible scenario made of natural autumn elements. You only appealingly arrange the world-building materials and decor just enough to get your children to start. This creative moment will make them more involved in the play. So, pretending to drive a train is now even more fun.
What about autumn and trains?
This perfect union allows children to spend an entire afternoon of laughter. Good autumn!
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