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The core of play based learning is Dramatic Play.
Dramatic play consists of; puppets, role-playing and often involves re-enacting a story. Setup is simple and should include props that encourage imagination; dinnerware, table, chairs, pretend food, a broom and dustpan, phone, dolls, dress-up clothes or tools.
They needn’t be expensive setups, a lot of items can be acquired from around the house or from a quick trip to Dollar Tree.
Today, we are going to focus on a popular theme loved by many of the momma’s out there- Coffee Shop. Obviously you have a bit of a coffee problem healthy appreciation for coffee when your kids would rather stand in as barista than play store, house, or post office. Hey I can stop anytime I want.
Err.. maybe not.
To get started, let’s look at the free or nearly free items we can use. Save your old coffee boxes, or bags.
Whenever I visit the not to be named famous coffeehouse I grab an extra cup sleeve and stir stick, and fast food has provided me with several cup carriers that definitely get used. If you have grinds or beans that have gone a bit stale, don’t toss them out.
Fill a plastic jar (with the lid glued shut) for a great prop to set the mood. We borrowed some pastries from a tea set we already had on hand. We used a cookie sheet (purchased from the Dollar Tree) that we already had on hand from a previous play theme.
What I purchased from Dollar Tree: Coffee cups with lids- 5 pack, brown shopping bags- 2 pack, green stickers, cash register drawer with money, 2 children’s aprons, and 2 foam cupcakes.
The majority of the purchased items can be used in other play themes; the cash register, play food, leftover stickers, aprons. When we were done all the items except for the coffee pot and cookie sheet-they fit nicely in the two brown shopping bags.
This adorable coffee pot really puts it over the top- my kids have really enjoy playing with it and will spend hours making lattes, and hot chocolate. It even has a little felt “pod” that goes in the top just like a real single serve maker.
The coffee pot and this fun set of printables (at the end of the post) are the heart of setting the scene, but your child’s imagination can take it further than you ever dreamed.
After printing the sign, and menu make it last longer by having it laminated, place in a protective sleeve, or laminate yourself with clear contact paper (Dollar Tree carries that ) It’s a good idea if you laminate the notepad pages as well, making it reusable with a dry erase marker.
For the aprons I printed out large copies of the coffee clipart and taped with packing tape (next time I will cover completely with clear and they will last longer) I used the green stickers to label bags and printed small coffee images and glued to the bags.
Use the small labels on cups, sleeves, bags or anything else you want to “brand”.
Take a look around the house and see what can be reused and repurposed, stretch your imagination and have fun playing with your little one too Momma. Enjoy these days of pure imagination and delight.
FREE Coffeeshop Printable. Just click to print below!
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