Little Bee loves to play outdoors with his trucks and I thought it would be a fun learning experience for him to have several cardboard community service buildings that he could associate with his trucks. Little Bee has a Tonka recycling garbage truck, Tonka firetruck, Little People school bus, and several other community service vehicles. I enjoyed creating and painting these DIY cardboard community buildings - school, fire station, recycle center, and hospital for Little Bee to enjoy while matching them to his vehicles.
This post is part of the "Outdoor Play Challenge" hosted by Building Blocks and Acorns. Please visit the landing page for a total of 30 amazing and creative outdoor activities to enjoy with your children.
Materials Needed for DIY Cardboard Community
- Several different sized cardboard boxes including a long box for cardboard roads
- Scissors to cut cardboard
- Acrylic Paints - Black, White, Red, Yellow, Green
- Various sized paintbrushes
The first thing I created for Little Bee was the cardboard roads for him to drive his trucks on. I found a long cardboard box and cut it into several strips. Then I painted each cardboard strip with black acrylic paint. After the paint dried, I added the yellow dashes down the center of each road. These fun cardboard roads are super easy to make and your child is sure to love them!
Cardboard Fire Station
Next I created a cardboard fire station by selecting a box that would easily fit Little Bee's firetrucks. I folded the flaps of the box up and taped them into place, then I cut one flap off the side to create an opening for Little Bee to park his trucks inside. I painted the fire station red and black and wrote Fire Station #123 on the front. I also included a handbell for a fun musical addition to the fire station.
Cardboard Recycle Center
I selected a taller cardboard box for the recycle center and cut the flaps off the top of the box. Then I cut a square opening into the side of the box big enough that Little Bee's recycling truck could easily park inside of it. I painted the box green and black. Little Bee had fun picking up several pieces of recycling (plastic applesauce cups) materials and driving them in his truck to the recycle center for drop off.
For the cardboard hospital, I folded the flaps of the box up and taped them into place. Then I cut one flap off the side of the box for the ER entrance. I also cut a small door into the front of the hospital. I painted the hospital white and black with red accents. I had fun adding a special touch to the hospital by painting a white helicopter landing circle on the roof of the hospital for Little Bee to land his Plan Toys helicopter on top!
I created the cardboard school along the same lines as the hospital except I cut out two doors in the front of the building instead of one. The cardboard box I selected for the school was horizontally longer in shape then the hospital. I painted the school yellow and black. On our walks around the neighborhood, we always pass the fire station and school. I explain to Little Bee that the fire truck "lives" at the fire station "house." He really loves the concept of the truck "living" in its own house. So creating our very own cardboard fire station for Little Bee to park his firetruck inside was really fun for Little Bee to explore. He loved to back up his trucks into their matching building with a - "beep! beep! beep!" sound. It was easy for Little Bee to match his community service vehicles to the buildings because I color coordinated them to match. We talked about how each building and each vehicle are used for servicing/helping people.