If there were Olympic medals for the performance of toys, playdough would be a winner. Let’s go for the gold with some Olympic playdough activities.
Playdough comes in all colors of the rainbow but not exactly gold, silver, and bronze. Those colors are found in the pot at the end of the rainbow. However, kids are usually quite happy with whatever is available. Playdough comes in many varieties, from plasticine to cloud dough, and is made of different ingredients like shaving foam or mashed potatoes.
Little Sister played with some yellow. Her Olympic ring isn’t exactly round, nor are the medals, but she is directing her own play and creating what she likes.
Some kids like to use tools with their play dough such as cookie cutters, a rolling pin, a plastic knife, small lifter, molds, and even scissors. Playdough is easy to cut and a great choice for scissor practice. But tools are not necessary for fun. Kids can pat, smoosh, pound, squeeze, roll, and engage in Olympic playdough activities without them.
Judges can give playdough top scores for these reasons and others:
- Playdough builds strength and dexterity in the small muscles in the hands, wrists, and fingers. Fine motor control is still developing at this age. These are skills kids need later for printing and other activities.
- Playdough isn’t a talking toy but there’s lots of conversation. As kids show and tell, they are using descriptive language and adding to their vocabulary.
- Besides hands, brains are very active as kids play with playdough. Problem solving, concentrating, and planning are some of the mental strategies kids are practicing.
- On an emotional level, kids are developing their self-confidence and learning to handle frustrations.
- There’s plenty of opportunity to be creative. Imaginations can go higher, faster, and farther with play dough. It can be part of children’s pretend play.
- In terms of sensory play, play dough certainly stimulates the sense of touch but also seeing. If you are making a batch at home, add in a spice, a few drops of essential oil, or kool aid powder for smelling.
In addition to Olympic medals, there are so many other things kids can make. They will have their own ideas, things that are both in and out of this world. What score would you give playdough?