Fun Bus Activities #4: Block Construction Play

The wheels on the bus go round and round but instead of people going up and down, this time blocks do when kids engage in block construction play. Blocks are a versatile toy enjoyed by very young toddlers and much older ones. Many block sets are made of wood, but they also are available in plastic, foam, cardboard, and rubber. Sizes, shapes, and colors all vary. Whatever kids have, blocks have tremendous play value.

building with blocks

For a play-of-the-day, after reading a Wheels on the Bus book and singing the song, the kids got out a bin of blocks and started to play. Big Sister set up some bridges for a road to go under. Little Sister checked out the other items in the bin.

block and train play

To make a bus or other vehicle that moves, wheels are needed. Duplo has large bricks with wheels attached and some pieces marked with a line down the middle for roads. Some people and animals are riding this one.block construction play Lego

Some Lego pieces have wheels too for making all kinds of vehicles. Building with small pieces exercises the small muscles in the hands and fingers. Because fine motor control is still developing at this age, manipulating blocks and other toys is challenging. Strengthening these skills is important for learning to print.

empty box play

For block construction play on a really big scale, bring home a large cardboard box. It doesn’t have to be as big as a real bus, but it might feel like it is to a child. Or, it might be a whole town with buses like the ones in this video.

Construction play, no matter what kids create, involves a great deal of higher-order thinking skills. The most obvious one is figuring out cause and effect. When kids build towers only to knock them over, they are exploring over and over what happens when they push. It works every time and when the tower falls, it’s pretty exciting. Kids are also solving problems. There is so much to discover as they build. Imagination is another part of the play. Where will the bus go? What will happen on the bus?

Ordinary events like seeing or riding a bus can inspire play and deliver extraordinary fun and learning. Ready to ride?


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