Wednesday, August 17, 2011

Playdough Recipes

A great tactile activity to do with toddlers is homemade playdough. Making playdough yourself is so quick, easy, and cheap, plus you can customize it to nearly any color or scent. Trip still likes to eat things so I like knowing what he's putting in his mouth and knowing that although it won't taste good, it won't harm him.

I found a great collection of playdough recipes at Pocketful of Posies. You can download the free e-book here. I have made the basic recipe several times now and we have enjoyed its great texture. Plus, stored in an airtight container, it has lasted us for several weeks. I look forward to trying the chocolate dough and the sand dough.

Recently I came upon several boxes of Jell-O that were way past their expiration date. I figured that there must be a way to make playdough with Jell-O. A little looking online later and I discovered this recipe:

Jell-O Playdough:

1 cup flour
2 tablespoons salt
2 tablespoons cream of tartar
2 tablespoons oil
1 cup warm water
1 (3 oz.) package Jell-O

Simply combine the ingredients in a pot and stir over med heat until it forms a ball. I read that it can burn easily, so watch it carefully. Once it forms a ball, turn it out on a lightly floured surface. Let dough cool for a few minutes until comfortable to touch. Knead, adding small amounts of flour if needed until playdough is no longer sticky and has a nice texture.

The fun thing about the Jell-O playdough is that it has both color and scent built-in. I gave the first batch I made to some friends of ours, and they were thrilled with it. We have discovered that making a fresh batch of playdough is a great activity when Trip's friends come over. They enjoy helping to choose the color or scent, like to see the process of making the dough, have fun playing with it, and are then super excited if they get to take some home.

More than just something to make for your own children, homemade playdough also makes a nice hostess gift for a play date, a thank you for another mom or family, or a get well gift for a sick child. With so many great options, why not make some today?

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