Over the February half-term school holidays we decided to start toilet training Oscar whilst there would be both of us at home; to hopefully minimise the accidents or help with the clean ups! We literally stayed in for a whole week so we needed lots of activities to keep us all sane and to stop O from being bored. We made dens, had a film afternoon with popcorn and of course did lots of creative play too; we played with oobleck, made a coloured corn sensory box and of course, we made a batch of natural play dough and some beach inspired loose parts!
This play dough and loose parts station was a massive hit! Oscar has always been a big fan of shells anyway but he has just loved this set-up of shells, gems and rocks and played with it every day for over a week! He has made patterns with the different loose parts, rolled his play dough out wide enough to squeeze all his beach parts onto his play dough and rolled out some play dough ‘snakes’ and decorated them with rocks! At one point he even went and gathered his little Happyland people and said they were at the beach and sat them on his play dough with some shells dotted around them!
I like to have some kind of play dough and loose parts activity set-up on Oscar’s art table at all times and tend to swap the theme and the play dough around every week to 10 days. At the moment we have small amounts of different coloured play dough with some loose parts to make some faces as we have been learning a lot about emotions and body parts recently.
Play dough Recipe:
1 cup flour
1 cup water
1/2 cup salt
1 tablespoon oil
1 teaspoon cream of tartar
- In a pan heat the water, salt and oil for a a couple of minutes. Turn off the heat and add the flour. Mix until the mixture forms a dough. (I usually mix it with a spoon until it comes together then leave it to cool for a couple of minutes before kneading with my hands). I purposefully haven’t added any food colouring to this play dough as I thought a natural, white play dough would be nicer for our beach themed loose parts.