With this Play Invitation children can develop their visuospatial attention, since they’ll need to observe and coordinate their movements according to the obstacles they encounter. Concepts such as movement, direction, contour, space, line and shape can be explored with this challenge.

What Could Lead Us to This Play Invitation

  • Children have been curious about mazes;
  • Children are excited about drawing and creating abstract compositions;
  • Children have been exploring games with quick changes of direction.

Materials Needed

  • Large butcher paper or construction paper
  • Loose parts like cans, blocks, cups, bowls, etc.
  • Crayons or colored pencils

Setting up This Play Invitation

  1. Set out a large piece of white paper or lay out butcher paper. You can do this on a tabletop or on the floor.
  2. Select the loose parts you’ll be using, and place them in a basket near the paper. Depending on the age of the children, they can be the ones to collect the loose parts from whatever they find (in our example, they chose tree cookies).
  3. Add the crayons or pencils.

    Tips: The number of children per group depends on the size of the paper, up to a maximum of six children.

How to Create the Drawing

  1. Invite the children to create an obstacle course using loose parts.
  2. Next, let them race through their obstacle course with the crayons of their choice! They can repeat this again and again, using different colors as they choose.
Children drawing marks around wood cookies on paper


Create a pushpin pathway for mark making: start by placing a white piece of paper over a piece of corrugated cardboard. Then let the children place and push the pins into their paper wherever they wish. Invite them to draw in and around the push pins with their choice of colors. They can manipulate the push pins into different designs and choose other colors to create a masterpiece.

Child making marks around push pins as an obstacle drawing

FOR OLDER CHILDREN: Create a mandala with the push pins. Use the push pins to guide the lines of the mandala-making.

How to Nurture the Natural Unfolding of the Child’s Identity During This Play Invitation

  • Children have the right to learn from each other and to benefit from collaboration. By sharing a project, children develop essential social and personal skills for life. The educator must ensure that there are opportunities to work in pairs, mini-groups, and large groups during day-to-day dynamics. This way, children will develop listening skills, dialogue, negotiation, and respect for others.

The Academic Learning Opportunities

  • MATH: Develop directionality and spatial awareness (up, down, left, right, around).
  • LANGUAGE: Use language to engage in conversation with their peers.
  • PHYSICAL: Develop visuospatial attention and laterality.
  • SOCIAL: Develop listening skills, dialogue, negotiation, and respect for others.


Place chairs in the middle of your classroom, or in open area. Play some music and invite
children to dance between the chairs, avoiding the obstacles.

Book Recommendation

A funny story about an obstacle course race.