Prop Boxes for Dramatic Play
Prop boxes are a way of setting the stage for Meaningful, purposeful play through exploring different experiences. When setting the stage with props children’s dramatic play will evolve naturally. Prop boxes will give children a variety of experiences in language, literacy, math and science, art, social and emotional play.
With Prop Boxes children have opportunities to play in a non threatening way. Children will be able to acquire new skills, practice evolving skills and experiment with adult roles without the pressure of conforming to adult expectations.
When children spend long hours in early childhood programs we as teacher need to insure that the environment is set up for optimal learning. Prop boxes are a way to help assure that the classroom environments are a living learning environment. Young children’s understanding and learning happens as they explore and investigate new roles, prop boxes are a great way for children to do that.
Prop boxes need to compliment theme of study and be rotated as the themes change.
Beauty Shop/Barber Prop Box
Post Office Prop Box
Office Prop Box
How to prepare a Prop Box
• Find alike size boxes. (office storage boxes or plastic tubes)
• Search attics, basements, thrift stores, garage sales, friends, family and the children’s parents are all great places to find your prop box theme related materials.
• Use real items when possible. Real items are always better than toys.
• Include literacy materials in every prop box. (Menus, books, maps, blueprints, writing pads, order pads, writing utensils, key boards, old type writers, are just some examples.) Children need to have many opportunities to incorporate reading and writing in their play.
• Include numeracy materials in every prop box. (Calculators, registers, play money, pricing, rulers, tape measures, scales are just some examples.)
• Have children help with ideas and items. Encourage the children to make items for the prop boxes.
• Ask local business for donations of items that will help the learning of children. Local businesses are always willing to help when it comes to children’s education.
• Include activity binders
• Always remember to design your prop boxes to include all areas of the classroom environment.