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5 Uses for a cardboard box

Kori Ellis is an editor and writer based in San Antonio, TX, where she lives with her husband and four children. At SheKnows, she writes about parenting, fashion, beauty and other lifestyle topics. Additionally, Kori has been published i...

Get creative with boxes

Sometimes the simplest things can keep your kids engaged. We often throw out (or recycle) cardboard boxes without giving them a second thought. Next time don't toss them out — use them to make something fun with your kids instead.
Think outside the box
Playing with cardboard boxes

Cardboard boxes can be turned into a number of fantastic things for kids —- from a fort to a shape sorter to a diorama.

1

Build a fort

A few cardboard boxes are all you need to keep your kids occupied all day. Stack up boxes in various shapes and sizes to create a fort. Your kids will love climbing in, on and around the boxes — building them up and then knocking them down again and again.

2

Put together a cardboard city

With a bunch of cardboard boxes, some colorful fabric and a little paint, you can create your very own cardboard city or village — complete with houses, grocery market, post office and other buildings. On The Busy Budgeting Mama, you can check out an adorable pink village that was made out of cardboard boxes for a child's birthday party.

3

Create a shape sorter

We've all seen those plastic shape sorters where little ones put circles, triangles and other shapes into the holes. Well now you can make a bigger shape sorter with a cardboard box. Take a cardboard box and draw various shapes on all six sides using a ruler and compass. Then, use a knife to cut out the various shapes. Use markers, paints and colored masking tape to decorate the box as you please. Seal both ends of the box with a hot glue gun or rubber cement. Allow your kids to put balls, toys and other objects through the holes.

4

Make a diorama

We've all made shoebox dioramas for school, and you can make larger versions too by using bigger boxes. A diorama is a three-dimensional model that depicts a natural scene, historic time or fictional characters. You can make a diorama of everything from sharks in the ocean to dinosaurs in prehistoric times to characters from your child's favorite book.

5

Build a playhouse

A large cardboard box is ideal to make a playhouse for your kids. Head to your nearest furniture store or Home Depot where you can get extra large boxes before they throw them out. You can use a second box to create the roof and other details. You can make this project as simple or as elaborate as you please. You can paint the box, leave it plain or decorate it with various fabrics and other materials.

Watch this cool time lapse of building a cardboard playhouse.

More about kids

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7 Ways to keep your kids active this summer
How to prevent the summer slump for kids

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