If you are ever stuck for something to do then Play Dough is the one for you! My kids love it and you get a good 30 mins of somewhat quiet (at least). It’s also a great stress relief for both the children and yourself.

If you are an Early Childhood Educator then see the end of the post for the EYLF connections

You need:

Get food colouring gel here.
  • 2 cups plain flour
  • 2 tablespoons vegetable oil
  • 1/2 cup salt
  • 2 tablespoons cream of tartar
  • 1 to 1.5 cups boiling water
  • Food colouring (optional)
  • A few drops glycerine (optional for stretch and shine!)

What to do:

Optional Glycerine
  • Mix the flour, salt, cream of tartar and oil in a large mixing bowl
  • Add food colouring TO the boiling water, then add into the dry ingredients slowly until it feels just right
  • Stir continuously until it becomes a sticky, combined dough
  • Add the glycerine (optional)
  • Allow it to cool down then take it out of the bowl and knead it until all of the stickiness has gone.
  • If it remains a little sticky then add a touch more flour until it’s just right.

For the final kneading I tend to just give it to the children and let them play with it and if it’s too sticky on their hands I then I just put some more flour in.

Early Childhood Educator Information

Best for children who are/can:

  • 2 year+
  • Following direction to helping create the dough.
  • Listen and follow directions, ask questions.
  • Manipulation of the dough, rip the paper in pieces, spoon movement.
  • Play with others / share resources.

This play based learning is best for children who are interested in of enjoy:

  • Sensory Play
  • Manipulative Play
  • Using their Fine Motor Skills
  • Manipulation Games
  • Quiet Games

EYLF Outcomes:

Learning Outcome 1: Children have a strong sense of identity
1.2 Children develop their emerging autonomy, inter-dependence, resilience and sense of agency.
1.3 Children develop knowledgeable and confident self identities.
1.4 Children learn to interact in relation to others with care, empathy and respect.

Learning Outcome 2: Children are connected with and contribute to their world
2.1 Children develop a sense of belonging to groups and communities and an understanding of the reciprocal rights and responsibilities necessary for active community participation.
2.3 Children become aware of fairness.

Learning Outcome 3: Children have a strong sense of wellbeing
3.1 Children become strong in their social and emotional wellbeing.

Learning Outcome 4: Children are confident and involved learners
4.1 Children develop dispositions for learning such as curiosity, cooperation, confidence, creativity, commitment, enthusiasm, persistence, imagination and reflexivity.
4.2 Children develop a range of skills and processes such as problem solving, inquiry, experimentation, hypothesising, researching and investigating.
4.4 Children resource their own learning through connecting with people, place, technologies and natural and processed materials.

Learning Outcome 5: Children are effective communicators
5.1 Children interact verbally and non-verbally with others for a range of purposes.
5.4 Children begin to understand how symbols and pattern systems work.

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