OHIO, US - A preschool teacher, Pete Kaser, in Ohio was amazed by the way 3-year-olds responded to having their toys being replaced with cardboard boxes and other raw materials.
There was no grumbling, fighting, or tantrums; instead the children took to the new 'toys' to create an igloo, a pirate ship, a rocket ship, a hotel and houses with makeshift kitchens, Gawker reported.
On top of that, Kaser also reported behavioural changes in the children.
Speaking to NBC4, he said, "Kids who had trouble separating from their parents in the morning or were just quieter in the classroom, we have actually seen them become leaders and we have seen them grow."
The reason behind the drastic move was that Kaser was not getting the "imagination out of the children" that he wanted.
Explaining his point, Kaser said that a toy already has set value to it, that is, a toy telephone would function as a telephone to children.
However, given a cardboard box a child and asked what they see, you might elicit 10 different responses from a child.
Just last week, Singapore's Senior Minister of Education Indranee Rajah said that the education ministry will guide preschools in designing and implementing an early childhood programme that is based on strengthening the relationship between learning and play.
She explained that not all activities labelled as 'play' can be considered to be purposeful and may just be a fun time given as a reward for accomplishing an academic task.
She also added, "Having good intentions in the activities carried out for the children is no longer sufficient. Purposeful play is not just any play.
"Besides being enjoyable, it allows children to make meaning out of their experiences. Teachers have an important task to deepen play experiences to ensure that they are enjoyable and beneficial for all children."