Add a simple rope and hula hoop activity to your oudoor play space for imaginative play and gross-motor development.
Ropes can be classified as “loose parts” in your play space. What’s a loose part? Well, Jenny from Let the Children Play says it best in a post called the Theory of Loose Parts, but basically they’re materials that have no pre-defined purpose in the play space. They can be moved and used in whatever manner the children like, giving them the opportunity to explore, build, transport and create. Small loose parts such as sticks and stones can be manipulated by little hands to be whatever the player wishes, and larger loose parts such as our rope and hula hoop encourage physical exercise and help to strengthen muscle tone, balances and co-ordination, not to mention imagination and creativity.uch as ourPlaying with loose parts often requires some form of physical exertion, co-ordination and balance, so not only are they fun to play with, they’re great for the body and the brain.You can see a couple of examples of ways that we’ve used ropes and other loose parts here in two of my previous posts: Pool Noodle Abacus and A Rope and a Bucket.
Best of all, it was quick to set up, and it didn’t cost a thing, because I already had the hoola hoops and the rope. I simply strung a very long length of rope over our clothes-line, and tied a hula hoop to each end of the rope.
tossing balls through the hoops,
swinging and swatting at the hoops, and climbing and crawling through them.
There’s really not much else to say except that it provided hours of fun, and the kids got a ton of muscle and co-ordination-building exercise while playing with them.
I’ll just let the photos speak for themselves:
Jackie is a mom, wife, home daycare provider, and the creative spirit behind Happy Hooligans. She specializes in kids’ crafts and activities, easy recipes, and parenting. In 1997, Jackie stepped out of the corporate world to start a family and to open her own home daycare. She began blogging in 2011, and today, Happy Hooligans inspires more than 2 million parents, caregivers and Early Years Professionals all over the globe.