Sunday, 16 February 2014

Our Fun with Cloud Dough

I have made cloud dough in my classroom and for my own children using a fairly simple recipe, although recently I have seen a super simple recipe using just two common household ingredients, that creates a lovely silky and stretchy texture.
How cool is that!!
 I have been wanting to give it a go for the longest time,
however it was this post by Kate at Laughing Kids Learn
that made me desperate to try it!! 

I will share my cloud dough recipe at the end of this post. 
Please click on this link to see details on how Kate from Laughing Kids Learn made the 2 ingredient version of the cloud dough shown here.
Hman does enjoy cooking activities such as the measuring, pouring and mixing for short bursts of time so I thought this recipe with only two ingredients was the perfect opportunity for him to get really involved and to be able to not only see but play with the results immediately!! 

Below are some snaps of us enjoying this fun task!!

 We've been working on Hman's expressive language development so during this task I focused on the action words he was doing.
Squeeze, fill.
measuring out 1cup of hair conditioner (the cheapest you can find)

 Tip, pour

adding in the 2 1/4 cups of cornflour

Hman has also been working on using two hands together so mixing the ingredients together was the perfect opportunity to practice by holding the bowl with one hand and stirring the spoon with the other. He needed some assistance to get this right so I didn't manage to get a photo but you can see how good this is for strengthening those arm muscles. 

I love that he was willing to get his hands messy!! It was just so inviting.
The delightful smell and silky texture is a treat for the senses!!
It provides many opportunities to extend vocabulary!!
Smooth, stretchy, squishy, squash, pull, push, roll, poke, stretch, pinch. 
Also, share, mine, yours, please and thankyou. 

Hman was very thrilled that he had made something he could share with his sister.
Miss M- "Wow Harrison, this is great, thankyou!"

The recipe I have used in the past for cloud dough also creates a super silky smooth texture it is not as stretchy but will hold it's shape so can be used for 3d constructions. It will require adult assistance as it involves heating. 
Miss M had fun last Christmas making ornaments from it!

Our Cloud Dough

2 cups bi-carbonate soda
1 cup corn flour 
1 1/2 cups water

To Make
Put all ingredients in saucepan and cook on stove until it looks line mashed potatoes.
Let cool then play!
You can leave them to dry over 2-3days then paint them with edicole or normal paint.

Safety Disclaimer~ always supervise young children during play with cloud dough

Play and Learn

Tuesday, 11 February 2014

Fun Feet Painting

We love painting and are always looking for fun ways to get messy!

Painting with our feet has always been a hit, however, my main motive for doing it today was to see if Hman would give it a go! Recently he has become quite reluctant to get anything 'messy' on his hands! I wondered if this sensory issue was the same for his feet.
The feeling of paint squelching between your toes is really something!! 

Taking footprints is a great way of recording your children's growth,
we know how quickly that happens!
 I particularly like to record those first precious, wobbly sailor steps.
It's a great memory to look back on and will definitely make you smile.
There's something incredibly special about those first steps.

This activity however, is suitable for any age from those first precious steps upwards.

I set up using long strips of butchers paper cut from a roll of paper from IKEA. Tubs for the paint at one end and a tub of water and a towel at the other end. This is so children can step directly in and wash their feet. It's absolutely not necessary.  

Surprisingly he stepped straight in the paint!! He went back over and over again so this was a success. Children may need to hold your hand as they step in because it's quite slippery! They step in the paint, make sure their feet are all covered then walk across the paper.

Of course they don't just have to walk.
Ask your children to think of as many ways as they can to leave different foot prints?
We tried, tip toes, skipping, jumping and hopping.

They may even like to use their footprints to make a picture!


The children requested some more colours!

Such a gorgeous effect!
I plan to frame some, I think it will look lovely!

A great fun way to remember those precious little footsies!!

Of course the children took it further and Miss M was covered from head to tie in paint. Hman used a brush, I though he may be getting close to putting his hands in!!


Play and Learn


Monday, 3 February 2014

Shaving Foam Fun

Recently we have been doing lots of sensory explorations at home involving getting our hands mucky! This is because recently I've noticed Hman has been reluctant to play in sand and mud and has started wanting his hands wiped whenever he gets food on them when eating of paint on them when painting. Which is fine, some kids are just more sensitive to these textures I was just curious how far this went with him and what it took to get him to get his hands MUCKY lol!!
We had success with him and the water beads, playdough and rice however slime wasn't so successful and since this foam has a similar texture I was interested to see if he would be tempted.
For this activity we used shaving foam. It has a delightful, light fluffy, smooth sensation. It also has an odour making this a great activity for exploring the sense of touch, smell and sight. Children are more involved in their learning when more of their senses are stimulated making experiences like this so rich and valuable.
AGE: with supervision 12months plus

We squirted the foam into a tray. Hman (2) didn't have the strength to press the nozzle, however Miss M (4) did and enjoyed squirting it out and watching it foam up!
To be honest I choose this particular sensory experience as we had a number syringes that we had finally finished with after they had their grommets in and Miss M had her tonsils out!

Oh how she loved using the syringes!
I was so relieved we finally had another use for them other than all the medicine I've been giving out the past week.
Great fine motor control at work

Miss M was able to do this independently.
Hman required assistance and enjoyed using the dropper more as he was able to control that better.

Once they had added all the colour they decided it was time to mix!
Lot's of observation and discussion happening on what they could see happening with the colours.

We took some prints of our patterns by placing paper over the foam and patting down.

We got to this point with relatively clean hands.
Surprisingly the kids hadn't been tempted to touch.
Miss M had far too much enjoyment using the syringes!

But she didn't need any encouragement.
the first thing she said was "it feels gloopy!'
This activity is great for language development and new vocabulary. Be sure to create opportunities to talk through careful questioning and listening to your child and taking their lead. Model new vocabulary such as slimy, gloopy, fluffy etc.
Always supervise your child when playing with shaving foam.
Play and Learn