A kid's post office can create an interactive play area for children to explore the workings of the postal system. They can learn about math while weighing packages and calculating postage stamps. Grammar, spelling and handwriting all come into play in the act of writing letters to family and friends. Reading is practised when children must decipher the mail they have received in their play post office. This entertaining setting can be created with a few empty boxes and other simple craft supplies.
- Skill level:
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Things you need
- Mailboxes incoming
Designate a child sized table for the post office centre. This can be a small play table, bench or even a large, sturdy cardboard box.
Cut the tops and bottoms off of six empty cereal boxes. Lay them on their sides and create two stacks of three boxes each, side by side. Staple the boxes together where they join with one another. Wrap Duct Tape around the entire set of boxes about 2 inches from the front and 2 two inches from the back of the cube of boxes.
Cover the exposed areas of the cereal boxes with construction paper to hide the designs. Place a label just inside each box on both sides with the name of the letter box's recipient. You can include family members, pets and even favourite dolls.
Cut two holes into a larger cardboard box. This will be the box where post office "customers" drop their outgoing mail. Make one slot near the top of the box on the front, where letters will be dropped in. On the opposite side, make a second hole near the bottom so letters can be easily retrieved.
Set the series of post office boxes on top of the table for the mail centre. Place the outgoing letter box beneath or beside the table. Letters can be dropped into the outgoing box, then sorted by the "post man" into the appropriate mailboxes for the recipients.
Place a small scale on the table for weighing packages. Make up a sheet which defines the postage necessary for each weight class.
Create play postage by writing different numbers on blank stickers. Set up a small box or tray on the post office table for storing stamps, so the "post man" can count out and dispense the necessary postage to customers.
Tips and warnings
- Encourage everyone in the family to participate in using the play post office. Family members can write letters or draw pictures for each other, and everyone can excitedly check their mailboxes each day for new deliveries.
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