A prototype of a toy building system consisting of rooms, wall cards, and ladders. This system allows children to create settings for the stories they act out with their small dolls and figurines.

A commercial version of this toy might include a lineup of various sets: a base set would include the rooms and ladders, while various separate theme sets would include wall cards and corresponding character figurines.

This simple system allows children to create widely varied environments on the fly, much more rapidly than with a building system like LEGO. Shifting the rooms, cards, and ladders around generates a creative feedback loop: a "bedroom" block set on top of a "Egyptian temple" block suggests a secret underground dungeon; a "castle" block set on top of an "earth" block suggests a fortress on a mountain. This leads children to explore stories they otherwise wouldn't.

toy design woodworking illustration