A Scarf Can Be So Much More


Activity Description

Children will use their imaginations to share other ways a scarf could be used.


20-25 min.

Key Outcome(s)

Use adjectives to describe nouns.

Materials and Preparation

Prep Time

5-10 min. 


  • We provide: OPTIONAL: ‘Scarf picture’. Click HERE to download.
  • You find: OPTIONAL: Long scarf


  1. Find a long scarf or print the ‘Scarf picture’ (one copy for you).

The Activity

What will we learn?

“Today we’re going to learn that objects can be used in many different ways. We will also use words to tell about, or describe, these objects.”

What do we know?

  1. "What is a scarf?”
  2. “What do we usually do with a scarf?”
  3. “What body parts can a scarf keep warm? (Neck. Head. Ears. Throat. Forehead. Cheeks.)
  4. “What are some words we could use to tell about, or describe, a scarf?” (Long. Warm. Colourful. Soft. Striped.)

Watch me first!

  1. Ask the children to stand or sit in a circle. Show children the scarf (or ‘Scarf picture’). “We can use objects in many different ways. We know that we usually use a scarf to keep us warm. Today, we’re going to use our imaginations to think of new ways to use a scarf. Sometimes thinking of fun, different, or silly things helps us discover new ideas or inventions.”
  2. “For this game, we need to remember two parts”:
    • a) “This is a scarf, but it is not really a scarf.” b) “It is a _____.”
  3. “First, I’ll think of something else the scarf could be.” Model holding and looking at the scarf (or ‘Scarf picture’) as you think of another use (e.g., skipping rope) and say the two parts: “This is a scarf, but it is not really a scarf. It is a skipping rope.”
  4. “Close your eyes. Can you imagine the scarf as a skipping rope?” Discuss how it could be used as a skipping rope and explain that there are so many other ways the scarf could also be used.
  5. “Now I want to describe the skipping rope, which means that I need to choose a word that says something about it.” Model looking at and touching the ‘skipping rope’ (or ‘Scarf picture’) as you do a think-aloud of some adjectives (e.g., long, warm, soft) to describe it. Then say the two parts again including the adjective you have chosen. For example: “This is a scarf, but it is not really a scarf. It is a soft skipping rope!”

Let's try it!

  1. "Did you know that not everything new comes from inventing? Many new things or ideas come from something called innovating. Innovating is when you start with someone else’s idea or an object that is already made and you change it. Now, let’s use our great imaginations to think of other ways we could use the scarf! Maybe a friend’s idea might help you to think of a new idea too.”
  2. Hand the scarf (or ‘Scarf picture’) to the child and ask him or her to share an idea, prompting him or her to say: “This is a scarf, but it is not really a scarf. It is a _____.” Encourage the child to add a word (i.e., adjective) to describe the new idea, assisting as needed.
  3. Continue taking turns sharing an idea as you hold the scarf (or ‘Scarf picture’). Remind and assist them to say the prompt sentences and to include a describing word. If the child is not able to think of an idea, allow him or her to say “pass” or “come back to me, please”. Reassure him or her to keep thinking as the scarf will come back around another time.
  4. Send the scarf (or ‘Scarf picture’) around a second time to give the child an opportunity to share an idea or a second idea if they have one. Encourage creativity and tell them to try to avoid repeating ideas.
    NOTE: If you are doing this with more than one child, it is important to go around the circle twice as children may have a difficult time during the first round to think of other uses for scarves, especially when they have known a scarf to only have one use. Once they hear others’ ideas and have time to think, it will become easier to think of an idea or additional ideas.

What did we learn?

  • “We came up with some really great ideas of how we could use the scarf! Which idea was your favourite?”
  • “Will you try any of the ideas with your own scarf? Which idea(s) will you try?”
  • “We also thought of some great words to describe our ideas. I remember that I used the word ‘soft’ to describe my skipping rope. What other describing words did we hear today?” (Long. Squishy. Thin.)
  • “What other words could we use to describe the scarf as a _____ (pillow, hat, belt)?” (Comfy. Warm. Wide.)


To make this activity MORE challenging:

  • Add descriptors and functions to the ideas (e.g., big, little, warm, long, short). For example, “This is a red and blue scarf, but it is not a scarf. It is a short leash for a big dog.”
  • Challenge children to think of as many different ideas as they can.
  • Ask each child to add a new use for the scarf, reciting what previous children have already said. For example:
    • Child 1: “This is a scarf, but it is not really a scarf. It is a kite.”
    • Child 2: “This is a scarf, but it is not really a scarf. It is a kite or a tent.”
    • Child 3: “This is a scarf, but it is not really a scarf. It is a kite or a tent or a ball.”

To make this activity LESS challenging:

  • Manipulate the scarf in different ways to spark new ideas (alternatively, print the provided ‘Additional scarf pictures’). For example: a stretched-out scarf might suggest a rug, a bunched-up scarf might suggest a pillow, a scarf draped over something might suggest a blanket).
  • Some children may need to see the provided ‘Visual picture cues’ to help them choose an idea.
  • If needed, verbally share an idea with the children to spark their creativity (e.g., dog leash, kite, hat, belt, headband, tablecloth, artwork, necklace, apron, rug, blanket, pillow, karate belt, skipping rope).