Has it been a while since you made playdough for your kids?
I often forget how useful playdough is to keep my children occupied, especially when I have to clean the house before visitors come over or while baking I need most of my attention to follow a precise recipe.
It might be a six months before I event think of playdough. I simply forget about it.
Then someone mentions playdough or I see a photo on the internet while I’m browsing my friend’s Instagram feed and I’m back in there making playdough for my little ones again.
Why is playdough so great?
- It’s inexpensive, especially if it’s home made (see our recipe below)
- It can be used in so many ways
- So many other materials can be added to change it up (check out our nature and playdough play)
- It keeps your children occupied. No really, kids love playdough
- It’s fun. Your kids are problem solving, getting creative and growing their fine motor skills all while learning through play!
We use the same play dough recipe that almost everyone does:
- 2 cups of flour,
- 1 cup of salt,
- a table-spoon of cooking oil
- and enough water to make it into the play dough consistency
We divide the mixture into four and knead the colour in.
Theme it and make playdough animals
Another way to keep enjoying playdough over and over again is to theme the invitation to play.
Recently I set up an animal themed invitation to play with playdough. It was a hit!
Add all the playdough to a table, plus some photos of animals. You don’t usually have to say anything, children will get inspired to build an animal just my having those prompts on the table.
If you have the time to join in, children can learn more as your guide them with prompts about the animals their creating. Don’t make it lesson, be sure you’re just asking simple probing questions occasionally.
- What body covering does that animal have?
- Can you see it has___? How do you think you might to make that?
- Why did you choose that animal?
- What animal might eat your___?
- What does your animal eat?
Playdough animal activities
There more that you can do with playdough. Once your child has built your playdough animals extend their learning and play with the following activities:
- Place the animals around your backyard. Our snake was put under a flower-pot, the possums in a tree, jellyfish in water and the echidna near an ant trail. We tried to think of the places that the animals would reside in the wild.
- Give your child a camera and let them move around the backyard and take photos of their animals in their environment.
- If your child makes a snake out of play dough, role play being snake safe. This is one of Miss Possums favourite activities.
- Do you have left over play dough? Why not make your own zoo and participate in some small world play with your child.
- My daughter loves to pretend we are the animals, so we play around the yard, and run away from predators
What animal do you think your child would make out of playdough?