What Makes Childhood Magical? Part 6: Forts

What is it about blanket or other kinds of forts that makes them so special? As a child did you build them both inside and outside? Memories of childhood often include playing in forts and they certainly have a magical quality.

Blanket Forts are Magical Spaces

magical childhood fortsA fort, or GORF—good ol’ reliable fort—can magically be a store, a house, a spaceship, or boat or some other place. With a fort, kids can have their own space, separate from the world of adults, where they can practice making decisions, try on different roles and be their very own boss.

Altho forts have unlimited possibilities, in the opposite way, they also limit what is happening and confine it. Rather like being able to ‘eat’ an elephant in small bites, a fort reduces the world to the area inside the walls. It becomes a place to relax and enjoy the peace. Children aren’t the only ones that need a quiet space. There are many posts from adults that take time to “crawl into a blanket fort and color.”

Forts can be made with blankets, kitchen chairs, big appliance boxes, and even a sheet draped over a table. The sofa and cushions are also possible. The backyard may have trees that can be part of the fort. If safe, it might be possible to use a space under a deck.

To us, a fort may not seem like much, but to a child a fort can be a magical world that belongs only to the child. Did you have one or more as a child? Does your child enjoy making and playing in forts?

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