All of us have had some experience with dough, from play dough to cookie dough, to bread dough. There is just something very therapeutic about it.
Some parents may find it messy but if we think about how much children learn from it, the mess becomes a small inconvenience.
So, what are some of the benefits of play dough beside just being a great stress reliever:
- It helps to develop control, coordination, and strengthen small fingers, hands and wrists.
- It allows all ages of children’s imagination and creativity to happen.
- It provides success experiences, there is no right or wrong way to use play dough.
- When children are playing with play dough with others, it encourages cooperative play, helps children understand the importance of sharing and builds communication skills.
- Playdough helps to develop enrich children’s language and literacy, science, and math skills.
Commercial play dough contains a lot of additives and is not “safe” for younger children who are still experience the world around them through putting things in their mouth.
Today, we are going to make our own play dough – one which is safe for children.
- 250 gm plain flour
- 270 ml water
- 4 tsp cream of tarter
- 60 gm salt
- 2 T vegetable oil
- food coloring
- Mix together all the ingredients, except the food coloring, in a medium saucepan.
- Cook over low/medium heat, stirring.
- Continue stirring until the mixture is dry and sticks to the spoon.
- Remove and put onto wax paper or a plate to cool.
- Divide dough into batches for the colors.
- After cooling (30 minutes), drip the food coloring onto each batch and knead till color is well mixed (For older kids, let them knead the dough.)
- Play with cookie cutters and other things you can find in the house. To make clean-up easier lay a plastic mat under the table
- Store in an airtight container in the fridge to keep for next playtime.