Loose parts are things that children can play with. Fixed equipment are structures that children play on. Loose parts found in nature include sticks, mulch, pebbles, logs or “tree cookies.” Other loose parts include rope, canvas or any kind of multiple items of the same type, such as empty thread spools, wooden blocks, hula-hoops and even toilet plungers. Loose parts encourage children to create, solve problems and work cooperatively. They provide the opportunity for children to have a degree of agency over their play environment and not simply respond to what is provided.
The Alliance for Childhood promotes policies and practices that support children’s healthy development, love of learning and joy in living. The Alliance works for the sake of the children themselves and for a more just, democratic, and ecologically responsible future.
Check out the video on Loose Parts with the Play Corps sponsored by the Alliance for Childhood