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Den Play Ideas

Once you have built a den there are lots of fun activities you can choose to do in them.  We hope you have lots of fun talking and creating magical memories together. heart


Build a Den

Majestic hidden castle? Mysterious bear cave? Magnificent space rocket? Wherever the imagination takes you, den making gives children heaps of pretend play opportunities due to the large range of den making materials that they can use – whether that’s building a rigid den from cardboard or a draped den with fabricsropes and pegs!  Building a den in the fresh air gives children a healthy opportunity to explore the natural world and use different materials – whether that’s creating a protective outdoor shelter with fabrics or getting mucky with natural materials such as sticks and branches.



Create a Sensory Den

Stimulate the children’s senses and create the ultimate glow in the dark experience! Using a dark fabric, and a variation of UV glow toys, torches and fairy lights, this will give children an exciting and new experience of light and colour, whilst heightening their senses.


Make a Musical Den

Elevate the children’s mood with an enlivening musical den! Provide the children with a range of musical instruments that they can take inside their play den. Then ask them to perform a series of musical rhythm games, where they have to play instruments as quiet as they can, then as loud as they can!



Set up a Reading Den

Calling all bookworms! Create a relaxing space and let the children nestle down with a book in their own cosy dedicated reading nook. Decorate the den with soft seating and fairy lights to create the ultimate tranquil reading zone, which will encourage children to read.


Narrate a Story

Storytime! Inspire the children’s imagination. Gather the family in the den.  You could cover your dining table in blankets and put cushions underneath.  Make it magical by making it dark and use fairy lights and  torches.  Then make up a story together to build up teamwork.  Take it in turns to add a new section to the tale and have fun making up stories together.  E.g. "Once upon a time there was a ...... called ......  She/he went to the ....... Suddenly a ...... appeared and it wanted to ....... Luckily she/he ......... and then went home tired but happy."  


Visit the Seaside

Who says building a sand castle is only for the seaside? Bring the beach to you! Using sandbuckets, spadesmouldsgrabbers and more, you can design your very own beach setting inside a den. Drape sky-like fabrics over an open space, fill it up with sand and there you have it, you’re at the seaside!


Create a Small World

Add an extra dimension to small world play e.g. dinosaurs, cars, trains, dolls, farm animals! By combining small world play with a den, it takes the children’s imagination to the next level. Whether its animals, cars or fairies, small world play inside a den makes children feel as though their imaginative world is more extraordinary and secretive.  They could create a backdrop scene with paint or felt tips and create a truly magical scene to play in and let their imaginations run wild.


Have a Teddy Bear Picnic

We’re going on a bear hunt! Time for a teddy bears picnic party inside a den.  Fill up the den with favourite teddies and enjoy a range of miniature-sized tasty delights and games, such as pass the parcel or five little bears number rhymes.  Can you make the food together?  Time this for when a member of the family finishes work and give them an invitation to join you?