Get some dried pasta and a colander and let your child poke the pasta in the holes. It’s a simple activity that can be done with things you already have laying around the home.
Put some masking tape along the floor in different patterns and ask your child to line up their small toys. A great activity to keep them busy and build up those fine motor skills. They will have to concentrate really hard to make sure they stay on the lines.
All you need for salt dough is 2 cups of flour, 1 cup of salt, and 1 cup of water. If you want to colour the fossils brown, you can use red, blue, and yellow food colouring all mixed together in the water. First, mix the salt and flour in a bowl until well blended. Add the food colouring to the water and mix it well until it becomes brown. Add the water to the dough a little at a time until a dough forms. Next, remove the dough from the bowl onto a floured surface and knead for at least 5 minutes. The longer you knead it, the smoother it will be. Once the dough is ready, grab your rolling pin and roll the dough out until it’s about 1/2 inch thick. The thickness will help with getting a deeper imprint into the dough. Use a glass or round cookie cutter to cut out circles, making sure they are big enough for your dinosaurs. Now, grab the dinosaurs you want to use. Put them on their side and gently push each one into one of the salt dough circles. Push them in enough to leave a nice imprint but not hard enough to put a hole through the dough.
You can let your fossils air dry, which takes a couple of days. Or you can bake them at 200 degrees for 2-3 hours or at 300 for about an hour.
Pasta Necklaces or Bracelet.
Give your child a piece of string and some dried pasta. Let them thread it to make their own necklace or bracelet.
Fine Motor Fun
Squash a ball of play dough on a table, stick a few sticks of uncooked spaghetti in it, then hand over a bowl of dry cheerios. Show them how to thread the cheerios one by one onto the spaghetti. Activities like these help to develop coordination of small muscle movements in wrists and fingers.
Sensory play includes any activity that stimulates your young child's senses: touch, smell, taste, movement, balance, sight and hearing. Sensory play supports language development, cognitive growth, fine and gross motor skills, problem solving skills, and social interaction.
Playing with ice is an absolute favourite sensory and science activity for small children to explore! Allow you child to try and work out how to release their small toys from the ice blocks.
Digging for Spaghetti Worms in Dirt is a simple sensory activity that only takes a few moments to set up. It's exciting, it's messy and the kids will have so much fun catching all the slippery and slimy spaghetti worms with tweezers and putting them into a jar.
You will need slightly wet sand/soil from the garden, a large container or tray and cooked spaghetti (left overs are great!). We have also used tweezers for the added fun and development of fine motor skills but this is optional.
- Slightly hide the spaghetti worms on the top layer of the sand/soil because too much sand/soil can be too heavy and may break the worms as they are being dug out
- 8 cups flour
- 1 cup vegetable oil or baby oil
- Food color (if you want to color it)
Pour flour into a large plastic container or tub and add food coloring.
Dump in the oil to the center and mix together with your hands until it is evenly distributed and the flour sticks together when you squeeze it. Add more oil if needed to get the correct consistency.
Give the children molds, scoops, and more and let them enjoy.
This can be stored for a couple weeks in an airtight container before drying
Together, make your own bubble mixture and have fun creating bubble pictures, using different wands or make your own using pipe cleaners or cut off bottle tops.
Bubbles are important for children. They allow them to discover the world around them, the magic of the world and develops their own self-confidence.
As part of their Personal, Social and Emotional Development (PSED), children need to be able to self regulate and understand how to manage their behaviour. Blowing bubbles is calming and children are captivated by the science: the size, the popping, the floating and the the colours.
Blowing bubbles also develops co-orindation which is part of their Physical Development (PD), again children will also be learning to be independent when using resources.
Allow your child times to blow bubbles independently but then get involved and have lots of purposeful, fun discussions: 'I wonder where they float to?', 'I wonder what a bubble is?'.
Heres a recipe to help get started:
- Add three tablespoons of bubble solution and two tablespoons of paint to a cup.
- Mix the paint and bubble solution together.
- Place a piece of paper on the grass or a table.
- Dip the bubble wand or a straw into the bubble paint and then blow out bubbles so they land on the paper.