Ready to let your little out-of-the-box thinkers get their hands on things they can not only play with, but tweak and twiddle? Go ahead, raid the recycle bin and upcycle materials into stuff that can double as tinker-worthy toys. From building cardboard rocket ships and castles to soda can cars and do-it-yourself geoboards, it’s easy to re-use stuff you’ve got around the house. Scroll down and let’s get to tinkering!

Pop Cars

What’s better than a toy car? A toy car that’s upcycled to move and made from recycled stuff. Grab some cardboard, a soda pop can, rubber bands, skewers, and caps, bring it together, then it’s time to ready, set, go! Get inspired with this easy step-by-step over at Pink Stripey Socks.

photo: Leslie via Pink Stripey Socks

Editor’s Note: We at Red Tricycle encourage learning. That being said, please be sure your kiddo has access to age-appropriate materials and always supervise playtime. Happy Tinkering!

What household items do you use to tinker? Tell us about it in the comments!

—Nikki Walsh