Learning Is Fun With Playdough
Playing with playdough is a highly motivating way to help kids build new concepts. It’s also a great way to keep the kids occupied and out of your hair while trying to do the household chores during the school break.
Not only is Playdough a very cost effective activity but it also has many other benefits to playing with it. A physical benefit is that it strengthens fingers, wrists and hands as a pre-writing skill. It is great for the imagination and creative juices because playdough can be made to represent anything. Building the imagination is required as a pre-writing skill. Coming up with their own creations also builds confidence and self esteem because there is no right or wrong to building with playdough. Allowing your child to access playdough when needing to calm down is also a great way to release any stress or hyperactivity behaviour by squeezing, punching, poking or pulling the playdough as these are all considered acceptable actions to do when playing with playdough.
Think beyond cookie cutters and plastic knives when thinking of things to use with playdough. Other great items in your kitchen are straws, popsticks, toothpicks, birthday candles, cupcake papers, rolling pins, old garlic crusher or potato masher, plastic containers, rice or pasta could be added too. Raid the craft cupboard or kids toy room for things like a plastic tea set, little items to hide in the playdough, old buttons, glitter, craft scissors. You could even try finding different shaped leaves to create leaf prints.
The best recipe for creating playdough especially if your child finds it too hard to resist eating it is this:
You will need:
3 cups of boiling water
3 cups of flour
1 1/2 cups salt
4 tablespoons of vegetable oil
4 tablespoons of cream of tartar
and food coloring for different dough colors.
Mix everything except the flour together, including a few drops of food coloring, in a bowl.
Add the flour, blending until it stops sticking to the edge of the bowl.
If the dough is sticky add more flour.
Remove it from the bowl.
Knead the dough on a floured board, adding flour if required.
As it cools it will turn into pliable playdough and ready to play with.
Keep in an airtight container. Store out of sunlight in a cool place.
Refrigerating your playdough will make it sweat and go mouldy.
It should last for weeks.
So the next time your kids say they are bored or you’re looking to make learning easier – keep them busy ‘playing’ make some playdough!