Let's Get Messy!

Messy Play Ideas for Babies and Toddlers

Messy play can offer many experiences for little ones. It encourages them to explore the world around them using their senses to taste, touch, smell and see the materials they are playing with. It develops their self esteem and confidence as they manipulate materials; it encourages their language development as we use descriptive words to describe what they are doing, e.g. “the dough feels cold and squashy!” It also develops their concentration which is vital for little ones. With so many positive outcomes, messy play is a MUST……so why not try it at home!



Why not try making your own everlasting play dough? Mix 1 cup of plain flour, 1 cup of water, 1 tablespoon cooking oil, 2 teaspoons cream of tartar, half a cup of salt and food colouring (optional) together. Place all ingredients in a saucepan on a low heat. Stir continuously until the mixture thickens to a firm dough. Allow to cool.


Shaving Foam

Getting stuck into the shaving foamFill a tray with shaving foam (not the gel variety). Try putting in little toys to hide and find or pretend to hide your hands in the foam encouraging your little ones to find them.



Messy Cornflour GloopMix cornflour with water until you get a gloopy mixture, pour into a tray and allow your little ones to explore! Try adding food colouring for variety.


Porridge Oats

Fill a tray with porridge oats. Little ones love to move cars and tractors through it or alternatively put a toy tea set in and let your child pretend to make dinner!
For other ideas why not try jelly, custard, compost, baked beans, spaghetti or lentils.

Thank you to China Creations in Olney for these suggestions on messy play activities that you can do at home. Don't fancy tidying up afterwards? China Creations runs messy play sessions at their pottery painting studio on the 2nd and 4th Tuesday of every month. Please call Penny on 01234 714300 to book your place or find out more, or visit the China Creations Website.

Topic: Do you have an messy play ideas of your own?

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