THE BIG DENTON PLAY DATE

By Johanna McDaniel

Children are encouraged to explore their creativity with pipe cleaners and colanders. 

Children are encouraged to explore their creativity with pipe cleaners and colanders. 

Are you pulling your hair out trying to figure out ways to get out of the house with the kids? Have your kiddos watched all 47,000 Mickey Mouse Clubhouse episodes? Denton offers a great many of free activities for families including the Denton Blues Fest, The Holiday Lighting Festival, and The Big Denton Playdate. In addition to all the other awesome services that they provide, twice a year the Denton Libraries host a big play date featuring Denton ISD, the Denton Public Library, and UNT for hands-on games that encourage early literacy.


The mission of the event is to teach parents and caretakers how to easily engage children with hands on activities to teach young children gross and fine motor skills, imaginative play, all with items you may find around the house. 

There were many volunteers to help the children (ages ranging from 1-5 years old) from Denton ISD, UNT, and the Denton Libraries, play and explore the play areas. There were reading stations, kinetic structures, stripes taped on the floor for balance practice, and lots of open-ended activities that helped the children learn creativity.

A set of sheets draped over some chairs can be turned into a secret fort or castle!

A set of sheets draped over some chairs can be turned into a secret fort or castle!

Children can learn to sort by shape, size , and color by using tongs and a muffin tin to sort small objects such as beads, pompoms, cotton balls, different pastas into a muffin tin.

Children can learn to sort by shape, size , and color by using tongs and a muffin tin to sort small objects such as beads, pompoms, cotton balls, different pastas into a muffin tin.

A cardboard box can be turned into a playhouse or a pretend car.

A cardboard box can be turned into a playhouse or a pretend car.

There are many free events open to the public that are available to you if you go here to the Denton Public Library website calendar. Be sure to be on the look out for the next Big Denton Play Date happening this summer!