There was an air of excitement in the classrooms of Gan Chamesh, Chabad’s early-childhood center, as the preschool celebrated Box Week. Inspired by award-winning book Not a Box by Antoinette Portis and The Happiness Box by Bracha Goetz, Gan Chamesh instituted Box Week as a means of letting the children’s imaginations soar as they play and experiment with all different kinds of boxes. The children collected boxes of all shapes and sizes and proudly brought their collections to school. The regular classroom toys were set aside and the boxes took center stage. The children used the boxes to create massive towers, railroad stations, rocket ships, and castles. Empty food boxes and canisters lined the shelves of the dramatic play and kitchen areas as well.
The box experience appealed to the children’s latent senses of engineering and architecture, as the children judged which boxes work best as a foundation for their structures. Box Week provided a medium for problem-solving and cooperation as the children devised their masterpieces together and participated in animated discussions about which boxes should be used to achieve a specific purpose. In light of the success of Box Week, many of the classrooms at Gan Chamesh will be extending the experience well into the next several weeks.
For more information about Gan Chamesh, Chabad’s Early Childhood Center, please contact Susy Adler or Suzanne Wallin, the program directors, at 516-295-2479.