Pretend play lets kids, especially younger children, experiment with ideas and concepts by role playing. Giving them props to aid in this supports language development as they create stories about what they’re doing.
Recently I was doing a photo shoot for our dolls when Miss 2.5 wanted to play with the microscope, sadly it was too fiddly and breakable for her to play with and it gave me the idea to create one for her – it is currently her most played with toy!
For us it has meant getting some books from the local library about bugs and explaining why a scientist or researcher would use a microsope. Her play microscope now has pride of play in the bedroom next to her Bex the Biochemist OK!Doll
Lets make a play microscope!
You will need:
- Recycled Plastic bottle
- Long recycled cardboard tube
- Small recycled cardboard tube – toilet paper ones are great for this as they are thin
- Small piece of cardboard
- Black paper
- Craft knife or scissors
Step 1. Trace shape of microscope using a marker pen. Remember to keep a thin piece to hold up the shelf
Step 2. Place small cardboard tube over the end of the bottle to cover the neck.
Step 3. Push long cardboard tube down and angle. Tape or glue it to secure
Cut slits down to create flaps to bend into the neck of the bottle – this helps to keep you long cardboard tube in place. You might need to shorten the small tube depending on your bottle.
Step 4. decide how big to make your microscope shelf, cut down the cardboard as necessary
Step 5. Cover the cardboard in black paper (or you could paint)
Additional: You could add bottle tops or circles of card to make knobs and the microscope can be painted
This kids STEM activities can be used to promote:
Language skills: labelling the parts of the microscope, asking questions and inquiry, discussing procedural elements of the task
Social skills: Sharing ideas, working with a partner to create the shapes/stick down objects, turn taking
Fine motor skills: manipulating materials, using tools to create shapes/cut
Please don’t forget to share your creations on social media using the hashtag #inspiredbyokdolls
Printables are for home and educator/classroom use.