Take a decently backed bookshelf that is not in use and put it in the front or back porch, facing the wall. Then a child can enter into all sorts of imaginary fantasies using it ranging from:
Using pencil can, glassless used spectacles, saved unwanted junkmail and/or return envelopes, and stamps/pads to "cancel" and a shoebox for child's mail, complete with child sized "mailman visor/hat and unwanted plain shoulder-strap handbag).
Create a concession with a cash box for play money/coins, with two of all sorts of "snacks" available to "sell" to "monied playmates", complete with plastic or can and string "order phone", order tablet/pencil, small cloth-covered table/two chairs, and "OPEN/CLOSED" sign, and small broom,trash can, sponge for cleanups.
Create a children's library with 10-12 of the child's favorite books, beanbags, small floor rug/carpet, stuffed animals if only child.Clock, dry erase or small chalk board to copy alphabet/pictures/times, with plastic pitcher and cups of juice or water to keep children comfortable outside but close.
Create a patio deli. Get an apron for the child and serve crackers, sandwiches, pickles/olives, sliced veggies on several trays.
All shelves can be utilized: Lined with newspaper for Library, Paper towels for CAFE, Shelf Paper for CONCESSION STAND, etc.
The bookshelf saves room space and allows for fresh air, damper space from giggles, loud voices and multi-child play, making clean-up easier.
By Lynda from Richardson, TX
OOPS, forgive me folks. I forgot to mention that the bookshelves should be the SHORT ones of about four feet high. Obviously the tall ones would
NOT WORK. Also, be certain to turn the whole thing around to face the wall when packed up for the night
until the next play time. Good luck.
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