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Do you ever have a stack of boxes after your grocery shop and you just don’t know what to do with all that waste? Well, in this short article, you will get some great tips and tricks!

Before we continue a quick introduction - my name is Yasmeen and I am a mother of three ages 2-6 - we have always homeschooled and plan to for the foreseeable future.

One of the things that can happen very fast when homeschooling is the cost racking up of things you think you need! Let me tell you; you can just as easily make them at home with packaging from your weekly shop.

You can make puzzles, you can make sensory play bases, you can make lacing activities and so much more, all you have to do is see the potential.

So let me talk about a few tips and tricks with different types of materials. I will begin with everyone's favourite Cardboard!

With a little help from a good pair of scissors and glue, it is malleable into anything. Do you see those wooden indented luxury boards that aid children to recognise their names?

Well, you can make that simple with two pieces of cardboard, one with the letters cut out and overlaid on the other. The benefit of it is that you don’t have to worry about what your child does to it because it doesn't cost an arm and a leg. They can rip it, cut it, use it, break it, paint it, you name it! Because you will always have more cardboard.

One of my favourite activities that we do is a cardboard workshop. I cut different cardboard shapes and sizes, different boxes, strips, and textures, and leave them with the children. Alongside some different tools - scissors, straws, pom poms, glitter, you name it.

Homeschool kid Drawing Tiger

Oh, the possibilities - we have had spaceships, cars, robots, racetracks, high rise buildings. It is an optimum opportunity to incorporate all their learning skills and let them form a high-rise judgment, have discussions, use critical thinking, and, most importantly, have fun!

Next up is plastics - we have saved every bottle lid ever and used it as a counting aid, as game pieces, and much more - just a warning though save for the older ones as littles do love to put them in their mouth.

If you have a bit of heat, you can make a hole in the lids and use it as a beading/lacing activity. We love making them into necklaces or snakes.

In a recent articleShelly Sanchez Terrel wrote:

“We want our children to be creative and create. We shouldn’t want them to think outside the cardboard box; we should want them to transform and revolutionise the box just like they used to do with cardboard boxes. See, we inherently are gifted with the ability to dream. When we are children, even in the worst conditions, we still come out dreaming and seeing the world as it should be. Our imaginations take us to better worlds, and we dream idealistically. We don’t see the barriers of reality placed by others. We don’t just see ratty, old boxes.”

Whatever you make will also be exactly how you wanted it, and if not, you can just start again! I do hope this brief article has benefited or inspired you in some way. From one cost-saving mom to another, think outside the box; think more than that!




Just a peek into our everyday homeschool life, we love making learning hands on, sensory and fun! All the better if mama learns something new too!



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