1. If your wee one...

    • Loves creating barriers or frames – this could be with train tracks, blocks, or even by pushing their food to the edges of their plate
    • Puts everything in boxes or containers
    • Insists on standing inside any circle, square or defined shape they see on the ground

    They’re not being “naughty” – they’re exploring the enclosure schema

    Schemas are patterns of repeated behaviours which children engage in. They are a crucial part of development and learning. Here are some ideas can help channel their interest.

  2. 1. Build a den

    Build a den Dens are great for building an enclosed space together and escaping the world – get under a table, use sofa cushions or create a den outside

    Once your den is built, why not bring in some books, stories, torches or sensory objects to explore?

  3. 2. Chalk Walk

    Chalk Walk Take some chalk for a walk and draw around things you find, chatting as you go. On rainy days you can even draw round the edges of puddles! Chalk shapes like circles or squares big enough to stand inside and see how your wee one decides to play with them – I wonder what could they be?

  4. 3. Frame it!

    Frame it! Next time your outside, or during your walk, collect sticks to create a frame and use stones, flowers, leaves and anything else you can find to lay out in your own piece of transient art! Remember and ask your wee one if you can take a photo of their work – it shows you value what they’ve made.

  5. 4. Jail Break

    For older children, find a way to “trap” an item that lets children explore how to get it out. A great way to do this is use rubber bands around a bowl filled with small items. They might then want to see which items they can get back inside the bowl again.

  6. 5. Tidying Up

    Put a large box, basket or hula hoop in the middle of the room, and pretend it’s a hungry monster – that love of enclosure might just get your house tidy!