If you’ve ever seen your children play with their cardboard forts or blanket fort, you know how inspiring these makeshift structures can be. They keep them occupied for hours, which is a perfect option for overworked parents like you searching for right now.
On the other hand, fort-building isn’t just a fun activity for kids; it also has a variety of educational advantages for kids of all ages. Putting together a great fort is incredibly simple and only includes a few things you can get in your house.
You can help your kids find cardboard they can use to build their fort, a blanket they can drape around it, and a pillow they can put inside to make it cozy. Do you want to make it easier? You can purchase your kids a fort kit they can easily build.
Your kids can spend their time building their fort for hours instead of just watching and playing on their gadgets. With fort, they can have spent more time enjoying fort play with their siblings. Here are more reasons why fort play can entertain kids for hours.
Fort play is universal.
A sheet draped over kitchen chairs is one type of fort your kids can enjoy. This easy-to-build fort could be transformed into a castle one night and a tea party the next. By letting your kids enjoy fort play, their imagination can grow further, and they will have the best memories of their childhood when they grow older.
Moreover, David Sobel, the author of Children’s Special Places: Exploring the Role of Forts, Dens, and Bush Houses in Middle Childhood, has researched how children develop important body and brain skills as they organize these small worlds.
His findings reveal that the need to wrap, enclose, or cover objects or oneself is universal. It’s also known as enveloping or enclosing behavioral schema, and it’s one of the behavior patterns that children all over the world replicate in their free play.
Why is fort play interesting for kids?
Kids may construct their own unique environment by simply draping a sheet over a couch cushion or cutting the cardboard to build a fort. It’s a world where their imaginations can take them to unimaginable places and enjoy fort play without distraction from the outside world.
These forts are also places where kids have control. Forts give children the autonomy of having a room of their own design in a big world where they are often made decisions for them. They get to choose how it will look, who will be involved, and what roles each member will play.
Fort play doesn’t just give the children a place to create their own world, but also it provides learning which is very important for kids’ growth and development.
Fort play supports learning.
We know we’ve hit a home run when we can give our kids an experience that is both stimulating and enjoyable while still encouraging their learning and growth.
- Fort building is a fantastic way for kids to express their inner engineer. Kids explore early STEM ideas and trigger important skills such as problem-solving and teamwork as they prepare, try new strategies, and make changes to their design.
- Using a sheet to make a fort, igloo, castle, or cave encourages the creation of different thinking, an ability that is at the core of innovation and helps children invent and come up with innovative solutions to problems.
- When the fort is broken by intense play, the children learn how to manage their frustrations and cultivate persistence as they rebuild the structure.
- Forts are also useful for stimulating the sensory system and assisting in sensory self-regulation. Kids’ proprioceptive and vestibular systems, which help balance, muscle control, attention, and concentration, are activated as they move their bodies around tight spaces.
- A fort’s interior is usually less exciting, providing children with a welcome respite from the outside world’s stresses. A fort is, very simply, a fortification against intruders. It is a place where you have your peace from everything that is happening outside of the world.
What role can you play as a parent?
Building a fort does not have to be expensive. A fort play can be done with a basic bed sheet, pillow, cardboard, and room.
Help your kids find the sheet or cardboard they can use and enlist your child’s assistance in putting it together. You can also include some basic building supplies, such as tape, cords, strings, and encourage your kids to use their creativity and problem-solving skills to build their own fort.
As you experiment with various building methods, welcome any suggestions from your kids. If you want your kids to have a fort that is easy to build but sturdy and easy to pack, a fort kit from Make-A-Fort is a good choice.