Blanket forts and pillow forts are a sleepover classic! Let your child create a “fortress of solitude” on his own for reading, telling scary stories or for cozy cocooning, or hold a construction contest at the next sleepover. Either way, building a blanket fort is fantastic fun!
What You Need:
- Pillows, sofa cushions (various sizes)
- Blankets, sheets, towels
- Optional: Heavy books, clothespins, binder clips, flashlight, reading material, snacks
What You Do:
- Supply your child with all the materials for building a pillow fort and let his imagination take the lead!
- A good place to start is with a couch or dining room chairs. He may need a parent’s help to move heavier pieces of furniture. Tell him to use chairs, sofas, and table tops as places from which to hang blankets or on which to balance pillows. A heavy book can be placed on top of a blanket or pillow end to hold it in place if needed.
- The legs of furniture can supply bases for the fort. He can build partially under a dining room table for example, and/or use the legs of the table to hold ends of a blanket.
- Clothespins, binder clips, and chip clips can come in handy for clipping blankets together or hanging a blanket from somewhere high, like from a window shade or sofa top.
- Some pillows or blankets can be the “floor base” if the fort is not built over a soft rug area.
- The finished fort makes a nice hideout for sleepover friends or for rainy days. If your child is alone, the fort becomes a great place to read books, draw pictures, and eat snacks.
- If you have pillows and blankets usable for outdoors, he could build a fort in a yard using trees, bush limbs, and patio furniture as scaffolds for the soft materials.
- Encourage your child to make other fort designs in the future. The pillow fort possibilities are endless!
Beth Levin has an M.A. in Curriculum and Education from Columbia University Teachers College. She has written educational activities for Macmillan/McGraw-Hill and Renaissance Learning publishers. She has a substitute teaching credential for grades K-12 in Oregon, where she lives with her husband and two daughters.