Sensory Play-dough

My little one year old is BUSY! Everyday he wanders around exploring everything he can, which isn’t much in a tiny two bedroom apartment. And some days it is so hard not to constantly tell him “NO”. No you can’t get tangled in daddy’s computer cords, no you can’t grab everything out of the trash, no you can’t put anything in the toilet…..He of course has tons of toys to play with, but this boy gets bored fast. So I decided to come up with more activities I could say “YES” to. I am not a big fan of “screen time” especially for babies, and with a mom who is a preschool teacher I knew I wanted learning activities, not just something to entertain my kid.

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I looked on Pinterest for activities for one year olds and quickly put a board together with tons of fun activities. Sensory play is so important to help children develop so I wanted our activities to focus on multiple senses.

Today was the first time we tried a planned sensory activity and Decker loved it. I had read about lots of different recipes for play-dough and finally decided to go with one from “Fun at Home With Kids”. This baby-safe play-dough was easy to make and safe if babies put it in their mouth. Which of course Decker did. However it did NOT taste good. Which I wanted to help Decker start to learn the difference between meal time and play time. However that did not stop him from constantly tasting it…

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At first he really wasn’t sure what to do with the play-dough. I showed him how to smash it down, press cookie cutters into it, and squish it between his fingers. He just wanted to eat it.

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Eventually I got him to drop pieces into the muffin tin, which he proudly clapped about.

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He kept trying to walk across the play-dough to let me taste some (I about gagged it was so gross) so I decided to let him play in it naked so he wouldn’t get it stuck in his shoes. He wasn’t so sure about it on his toes at first but eventually he dove back in, literally.

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Overall the play-dough was a huge hit. We played with it for about an hour and would have kept going if I hadn’t had places I needed to be. Of course the fun different colors I had made eventually turned into one green blob, but he still liked seeing the different colors at the beginning.

The dough was slightly greasy and the colors weren’t as vibrant as I wanted. I’m sure some of that could have been the amount of food coloring I put in. The longer he played with the dough the stickier and greasier it got. But after being in the fridge for a while it got firm again and was ready to go for another day. This recipe worked well, but I will probably try a few other recipes to try and find the best one for us.

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