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The Green Room

by Leah
(Albany,NY)

The playroom in our house is located directly off the kitchen and has as much character as the children who play there. It is always evolving and has a history. The wooden kitchen was rescued from a dumpster when my oldest was just an infant. The cradle was made for me by a family friend. And the brown shelf was made for my mother by her grandfather.


I want to instill in my children that stuff is made by people not machines. Wood, wool, cloth, metal, and ceramic are materials that I understand and can explain (how does that toy talk?-umm...). Many of our toys are made by us, friends and family or are purchased with the intent to inspire open-ended play. We do have some plastic toys but they are limited. We have a doctor's kit, View Master, bristle blocks, and a few other odds and ends. I also try to limit the amount of "dump-ables" (like blocks and legos) that are accessible each day, otherwise the room turns into a sea of toys.

The kitchen is stocked with wood and felt food. A bucket contains instruments, store-bought and handmade, for impromptu marching bands. Dress-up clothes, hand-dyed playsilks and vintage hats spill from the drawers. There is a small wooden stable and growing collection of farm animals. We collect pine cones, rocks, fabric scraps and save corks to have available for building. We have many bags of different shapes and sizes that are used for "journeys." There are plants on the windowsill for the children to take care of and a growth chart on the closet door for them to see their own progress. The art on the walls changes and is added to all of the time.

Art supplies, books, and games are stored and used in other parts of the house.

This room is used mainly by a three and a half year old and the babe will be turning one soon.

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