Our quite the collection of Tonka cars. So much so that I decided to re-locate half of their collection to our outdoor classroom. Many of their Tonka cars are construction vehicles, which inspired me to create a construction play area for them.
The base of the construction zone is a dirt filled paddling pool.
Then I added some red lava rocks and various larger stones I found around my yard and a few plastic nesting/stacking cups that the children have outgrown playing with.
We also included some shovels for digging around, making piles, etc..
And of course, our collection of Tonka cars.
This has been one of the simplest outdoor play areas to set up, and we had most everything we needed on hand already, yet the children get a ton of use out of it. The dirt and texture of the lava rocks is an incredible sensory experience. The open-ended aspect of building and tearing down their own creations allows the children to get really creative. Besides that, the moving of the heavier rocks has been a wrist strengthening exercise for SunnyGirl, who is just starting to learn how to do letter formations and such.