From dirt lot to studs to drywall to finishes, we witnessed our house being built. How incredible! And every week we visited, we saw how each trade transformed our home until we finally moved in a long year and a half later. So when it comes to construction, my kids jumped right in, and your preschoolers can, too, with this construction dramatic play set! Build houses and roads from start to finish, just like we saw happen right before our eyes.
Construction Lesson Plans
Construction dramatic Play
Ideas for Setup
If you’re like me, you love a list. Not only does it keep me on top of tasks I need to complete, but crossing something off of a list creates a sense of accomplishment.
Even if I sometimes add something I’ve already completed just to check it off… it makes me feel I’ve made headway!
This list is a simple step-by-step guide to creating your construction dramatic play area.
Start with a backdrop or caution tape on black butcher paper.
Repurpose a shelf or desk for any construction-themed supplies you plan on including in this dramatic play area. I like to include tools, safety tools, and a variety of construction vehicles. If you don’t have them all, it’s okay to encourage your little ones to pretend!
Gather cardboard pieces and cut slits so your preschoolers can stack and build!
Find an unused binder in your room to house blueprints and road plans.
Add cardboard bricks or foldable brick boxes to the center to encourage building. If you don’t have either, you can repurpose empty tissue boxes for the same effect!
Gather PVC pipes or cardboard tubes to spark your builders’ creativity further as they navigate the world of construction!
Building a house
One way to initiate prolonged dramatic play is to give your preschoolers ideas on what they can do in the construction dramatic play center.
Enter instructions on “How to Build a House.”
And while these instructions are extremely basic and, I’m sure, not up to code, they do give your toddlers ideas on things they can do.
Dig the foundation. Pour the concrete. Build the walls. Install electrical wires. Connect the pipes. Paint the walls. Lay the tiles.
And before you know it, you’ll have a toddler-lifesize house in your classroom!
Construction Dramatic Play
Growing up, we would beg for a piece of Dad’s coveted graph paper so that we could disappear into the imaginative world of our dream house alongside him. With each line, our architectural wishes would come to life: an indoor pool with a waterslide, a bathroom all to myself (our family of 8 shared 1.5 bathrooms), and a McDonald’s inside your house. Oh, wait. That’s Richie Rich’s house.
So it’s fun for me to share a childhood joy with my kids, making blueprints for our dream houses.
And now your preschoolers can design their dream home, too!
Just follow the simple blueprint key to draw the house only you can dream of!
Ideas for Construction Play
Sometimes, it’s hard to think of new and exciting activities that your toddlers will be excited to do.
As a mom of two, I know that fresh ideas, materials, and activities are a must for sparking prolonged play and total engagement.
Hopefully, this list of things your preschoolers can do in the construction dramatic play center will help you spark excitement and play:
- Pretend to paint
- Build with bricks
- Build with pipes
- Pretend to use tools
- Use a safety checklist
- Create blueprints
- Build a home
- Build a road
Construction Dramatic Play
You can get lost in old neighborhoods. The streets wind, and the trails intermingle the stories of the past.
We, however, just moved into a new development, and while the houses are shiny and beautiful, the roads are lacking. There’s no romantically wandering down these two parallel streets. Sigh.
But as part of our construction dramatic play set, your preschoolers can build winding roads for wandering.
Either follow one of the designs on the road plans or create your own path using magnetic tiles with road printouts taped on top.