cardboard box boat

Big fish little fish cardboard box – toddler play

Like most households, we have a few boxes around the house.  The OH always wants to chuck or burn them as soon as what they’ve held has been unpacked, but I like to try and keep a few good sized boxes that can be used for postage.

Since having N I’ve always thought he would like to play with boxes, so I’ve tried to use a few for storage (bulk nappy boxes are great box tidies or toy boxes if you cover them with gift wrap) as well as giving him a few old shoe boxes to put small toys in.

But we’ve never really had a large enough box to use for sitting in and turning into something interesting.

Until yesterday, when eventually our Letterbox order turned up (crikey, that was hard work chasing that.  They must have the worst customer service and I should definitely go back and add them to this post!).

Wow, it was a huge box, and pretty shallow so quite a few options for being creative.

N’s a boat fan at the moment, so it was only right that he decided he was going to sit in the boat and go sailing.  Or he would have gone sailing had I made an effort to pull him round.  Instead he had to sit and lie back pretending to sail in his boat.

cardboard box boat
Mummy, pull me round

I though the boat could do with some decorating, so I got out the pens (maybe Sharpies weren’t such a good idea as I couldn’t relax with those in a toddler’s hands, although he was very good with them) and we got to work.  I drew some waves for him, and he drew….I’m not entirely sure.  He said it was a chair and then it became a tractor.  Not quite following the sea theme.

N’s never really seemed keen on drawing but he did have a good old scribble, and then announced his drawing.  I’m not sure what it was meant to be but he didn’t like my idea that he might have drawn a fish, ‘it’s a crocodile’.  That works, and it really did look quite like a crocodile’s jaws and mouth.  I offered to colour it green, then he wanted an eye adding, including one on the nose which I amended to be a nostril.

cardboard box artwork
Boat minus sail and oars, but with added crocodile

I think he was quite pleased with his boat, and this morning on waking and going downstairs with his dad, he dragged the boat from the back room and to the bottom of the stairs.  It had a very precise location, so maybe I should be locating a sextant and flagpole for him.

What cardboard box creations have you and your children created?

Love it? Share it


  1. You just can’t go wrong with a cardboard box! My kids love playing with them. We’ve had a pirate ship, but I’d say a castle (complete with turrets) was probably the favourite creation to date

  2. Aww he looks very pleased. Can never beat a box and many a time my children abandoned the toy that came from the box to play with the cardboard instead.

    1. That’s a good idea of Kiddicare’s. So important to aid their creativity, and N’s definitely getting that at this age. It is a bit tiring dragging him round the room – he seems quite happy not moving far though, thankfully.

Comments are closed.