activity wee boxy friends

Wee Boxy Friends

Give your bitty boxes some personality! These DIY toys make recycling and preschool small motor skills practice a good time.


Remember, the more materials you choose to use, the messier this activity will be. Prepare your child, your area and yourself.

MATERIALS - click to buy
  1. Small cardboard boxes or containers of assorted sizes. We recommend 13 inches tall at maximum. Look out for sizes similar to these single-sized 1.25 ounce breakfast cereals or 8 ounce baking soda boxes found on Amazon
  2. Construction paper in assorted colors like this example.
  3. Preschooler-friendly, non-toxic crayons or large, washable markers like these. Check out our Materials guide for more tips on art materials for young children.
  4. Fast drying glue like this or cellophane tape found here. If you choose to use tape, be aware that it doesn't work well with markers or crayons and ... preschoolers are often fascinated by it!
  5. Optional decorative extras - Felt squares, yarn in your color choice, sparkly sequins, funky turkey feathers, wiggle eyes, satin ribbon, spare buttons or fabric scraps
  6. Optional - Sharp scissors, for adults only, to cut cardboard
  1. Skilly Spark: Start with a cardboard box small enough for your little one to handle easily. Chat about what character the box could be. Can you imagine that you can find a character inside this box? Let’s take a gander. Do those square corners look like they could have ears growing out of them? Can you see where arms and legs would be? Would this size box make a fat or skinny creature? Let’s see what kind of character we can create with this box.
  2. Now, let your child decide how to divide up the space on the box according to the parts of the body. Mark off the top part you want for the head and neck, where you want the waist to be, where the legs should start and end. If desired, you can cover the whole box with construction paper and mark the parts of the body on the paper.
  3. Then have at it with your decorating extras like sequins, buttons, fabric scraps for color and texture.
  4. As a finishing touch, give your character a name and start thinking of the stories you can tell your friends about it.
Keep the fun going
  • Go round! What creatures can you create with round containers such as an cylindrical oatmeal carton or single-size cream of wheat like this?
  • Have a Boxy Friends playgroup. Get your friends together and create many different characters to pretend play with.
  • Recreate your child’s favorite book character and then ask them to read their story to your preschooler.
  • Make houses out of larger boxes and build your boxy friends’ neighborhood.

+ Inspiration/Thanks goes to the squirrelly squirrels that live in Claire's pecan tree.