#repurposingforplay – Bed Sheets

Do you remember using sheets to make forts as a child?

Blankets and sheets became the roofs and walls. Chairs, tables, and couches were the frames. Building was only one part of the fun. After making the fort or castle, then we imagined adventures both alone and together.

When I was a child, my brother and I created our own parade float. One New Year’s Day, while our parents slept, the Rose Bowl Parade floats inspired us. We gathered our materials. A flower-covered blanket and some treasured possessions decorated our float. We even made a space under the float for the driver. At the time, I felt like we were being sneaky taking out so many things to use for our creation. I expected my mom to be mad at us because of our mess. Instead, she was very proud of us and our creation. Mom valued our play so much that she photographed us and our float—this was way back when cameras had film. Because she valued our play, this memory has stuck with me throughout my life.

Connecting your childhood with theirs

If you have good memories using sheets and blankets for play, why not use it to connect with your children? Your stories of childhood will amaze your them. They will feel overjoyed when you give them the opportunity to play like you did.

Assist your children in their play as they invite. Be prepared to climb inside too. Sharing your childhood stories is as important as listening to them tell their stories. Experiencing life together will make for more stories.

You: “I remember…”

Them: “I remember…”

Together: “Do you remember when we…”

Playing with bed sheets is one great way to connect with your child. Don’t wait for a rainy day. Any day is a great day to build with bed sheets both inside and outside.

Do you feel uncomfortable using your bed sheets?

If using your personal bed sheets for play isn’t what you want, buy second-hand at a yard sale or thrift store. Put the sheets, blankets, or other fabrics in a play bin for any day play. 

In this series, we’re striving to inspire the use of everyday things for play. The tip sheet is here to help start the process. Be sure to come back next week for more. 


Comment below with your answers

  • Do you a favorite childhood play memory you could share with a child?
  • What adults encouraged your play?
  • How can you help share play memories with your children?

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