Cardboard City, an evening of dramatic play, was the culmination of a weeks-long project in which cardboard boxes were transformed by the imaginations of the children and their parents. The students, under the guidance of a resident artist, worked for weeks designing and constructing cardboard buildings and objects.

Now everyone knows that kids love empty boxes. They stimulate the imagination and can be turned into almost anything – a cave, a fort, a house, a spaceship, a car. For Cardboard City, each preschool classroom turned boxes into stores, including a pizza restaurant, a beauty salon, a candy shop and a pet store. Not only did they create the buildings, they used cardboard and some other kid-friendly materials to create the activity that goes on in their building. Our babies and toddlers were not left out of the project. A cardboard archway will lead to a special neighborhood of houses the children helped design.

What the students (and many parents) may not realize is that playing with, in and around boxes facilitates a lot of learning and brain development.

While we are excited to welcome our families to Cardboard City, the kids have already had a fun time playing (learning) with one of the most valuable educational toys around – empty cardboard boxes.