Messy play

Children gain a lot from playing with sensory materials, and often it’s the simpler the better. For example, working with playdough exercises the top half of the fingers and fingertips, which is very important for forming a correct pencil grip later on. Messy play also stimulates the senses, and develops self-motivation and creativity. It can be explorative and scientific. It’s also very calming, achievable for any skill level, and builds concentration and confidence.

Here are some simple ideas for messy play:

    – Slime: mix pure soap (liquid or flakes) with hot water, keep mixing until it turns slimey!
    – Cloud dough: mix shaving foam and fabric conditioner together
    – Goo: mix cornflour and water together

And here’s the playdough recipe that we use at nursery:


    – Two heaped cups of plain flour
    – ⅔ cup of salt
    – 3 tbsp cream of tartar
    – 2 cups of boiling water
    – 3 tbsp oil
    – Any food colouring, glitter or spices that you would like to add


    – Mix the flour, salt and cream of tartar together
    – Add the boiling water, oil and any extras
    – Stir and squish until it all comes together!