(1) It was free.
(2) It kept my boys busy for hours.
We made little forests in shoe boxes. My boys kept coming up with more ideas, going outside for more supplies and making these little forests with caves, houses, streams, hiding spots, and people. We used items we already owned so I didn't pay a dime. This was a huge hit.
Miniature Forest in a Shoe Box Materials:
Any small figures or animals you have on hand (We used army guys.)
Rocks, sticks, leaves, flowers...things collected from outside.
Any other craft supply you have on hand that would add to the project.