How to make a Cardboard Rowing Boat

Posted on May 20th, 2016

Country Kids from Coombe Mill

There is no such thing as rubbish in my world. We had just taken delivery of a new running machine for the gyand while I helped Farmer Nick and the teens unpack it, I was already thinking of uses for the cardboard box it came in. It didn’t take me long to come up with a cardboard rowing boat and fairground games idea for my enormous box. Stimulating imagination and creativity in young children is a great way for them to develop and learn.

Practising Counting

My little group was age 2 to 4 and I wanted to weave some basic number work into our cardboard rowing boat adventure. I knew I had to keep things fast paced with little ones and took every opportunity to practise counting during the hour.

We began with a counting book in the games room, where the children counted, pointed and answered questions.

From here we moved on to one of our Early Years farm counting sheets from our website. The children needed a little help with the higher numbers but were great on the 1 – 5 range, matching farm pictures and numbers.

Reading and counting games to start Activity Hour at Coombe Mill Family Farm Holidays, Cornwall

Let’s make a cardboard rowing boat

There is only so much number work little minds can take on board, so we broadened our learning with imagination and role play. It was time to brave the drizzle outside as each child was tasked with finding two sticks to use as oars in our boat.

Stick hunting for Activity Hour at Coombe Mill Family Farm Holidays, Cornwall

We used a pair of scissors to make holes in the cardboard just big enough to push a third of the stick through to form the oars.  Then the children climbed aboard and to a chorus of “row row row your boat” we set off to the fair in our cardboard rowing boat.  

How to make a cardboard rowing boat. Fun at Coombe Mill Family Farm Holidays, Cornwall

At the fairground

The fairground had a game of skittles all waiting for the children. The other half of my cardboard box became the skittle alley with toilet roll inners as skittles and a soft ball to roll. The children soon got the hang of the game, taking it in turns to count how many they knocked down. With support and cheers from parents and help with counting, each was keen to improve their score.

We moved from knocking down skittles to throwing a ping pong ball into cups, after a week of farm fun and with imaginations taking hold, this soon turned into throwing the toy animals into the cups and I was delighted to watch them embellish the game.

Fairground games at coombe Mill Family Farm Holidays, Cornwall


Finally, the rain cleared and we were able to go back outside. The next challenge I’d set was a nature hunt to make a paint collage. The children searched around for twigs, leaves and flowers to make prints with while I set up a sheet of wallpaper with paints under the veranda of the games room.   


nature hunt


I started them off with a quick leaf print and then left them to explore with paint and nature, sticking on any pieces they wanted. I was thrilled with the enthusiasm of the children for their task, each of them doing something and progressing from nature prints to hand prints, watching colours mix and the collage grow.  

Making a nature art collage

When everyone was finished, I left the artwork to dry and hung it up on the games room wall, while Guy led the children over to the front lawn for the last train ride of the week.

Guy running the train at coombe Mill Family Farm Holidays, Cornwall. UK

It was an involved challenge for my little ones this week but they coped really well. I even had one ask his Mum after if they could make a cardboard rowing boat at home. I’ve saved the boat as I have another idea forming in my mind for next time.

Joining in with Country Kids

I’d love you to come and share your outdoor fun with me here on the linky. All posts are welcome from playing in the garden to days out. All I ask is that the post is predominantly outside, away from screens enjoying some fresh air. I’d be delighted if you would take my badge or link back here and please remember to check out some of the other posts, it might just be the inspiration for your next adventure.

Country Kids is around in these communities, I’d love you to join me: 

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Two chances to Win with Rockfish & Country Kids

Win a pair of wellies from Rockfish Monthly

A Chance To Win with Rockfish Wellies from Coombe Mill Family Farm Holidays, Cornwall, England, UK. 

I am delighted to announce that Rockfish have joined with Coombe Mill to sponsor the Country Kids link up. Rockfish are a local Cornish company specializing in stylish Wellingtons for all the family. We have been offering their country wellies in our borrow room here on the farm for over a year and they are always popular for their style, comfort and durability.

Each week my favourite #CountryKids posts, which include my badge or a link back here,  will be considered for a free pair of Rockfish Wellies at the end of the month; the perfect way to enjoy the outdoors whatever the weather throws your way. The wellies we offer may change each month but are always high quality, comfy and stylish so keep an eye out here on Country Kids to see which designs are up each month.

My May winner will be able to choose any welly form the online range. For more more information on the Rockfish Wellies on offer with us and terms and conditions to win see here

A few of my favourites in with a chance of the May Rockfish Boots:

It isn't often I favour an urban post on Country Kids but this look at New York had plenty of walking, outdoor fun and sights galore from Mum turned Mom

A little imagination can turn beautiful gardens into magical fairy gardens as Little hearts big Love did with her girls

Mommy's Little Princesses found the perfect relaxing park for a family outing with her girls 

Win 25% off weekly with Rockfish

On top of the monthly free wellies, Rockfish has kindly offered everyone who enters #CountryKids this week a chance to win 25% off at their online store, a little extra incentive for some affordable outdoor fun

25% Off Rockfish Wellies Week 16

Country Kids from Coombe Mill Family Farm Holidays Cornwall

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