One way that we keep things interesting at Wonderings is by setting up what are called invitations to play, provocations, or play prompts. While it may sound complicated, the idea is quite simple: set out a few different basic materials in an inviting way and step back and let the children explore and play how they choose. Often we use materials that are available during free play but may not be commonly used together. By arranging them in a new way, the children often come up with new and creative uses they hadn't thought of before.
A recent invitation to play we set up consisted of uncooked spaghetti, playdough, and beads. All of these materials have been used before but we had never put them out together. The children who chose to explore the table all played with the materials in different ways. A teacher was nearby observing and facilitating the play but trying not to interfere too much.
Check back regularly as we share more invitations to play, create, and build!