SENSORY ACTIVITIES

Here we are collecting recipes and activities that we have used and loved so that you can try them too, most of these ingredients can be found around your house or in a quick trip to the shop. There is a variety of activities focussing on both sensory and fine motor skills. 

Edible Playdough Recipe

You will need

  • 2 cups water

  • 2 ½ cups plain flour

  • ½ cup salt

  • 1 tablespoon baking powder / cream of tartar

  • a packet of fruit flavoured powder e.g. jelly powder or kool aid

  • 3 tablespoons vegetable oil

Method

  • Boil the water.

  • Whisk together the flour, salt, cream of tartar, and soft drink mix in a large bowl; stir the vegetable oil into the flour mixture using a spoon, not a whisk.

  • Pour the hot water into the bowl and continue stirring.

  • When the dough is cool enough to handle, turn it onto a lightly-floured surface and knead until smooth and elastic.

  • Store unused portions in refrigerator.

The playdough is not designed to be consumed like food but if ingested it will not cause harm.

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Sensory Gloves

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Ice Painting Recipe

You will need

  • Cup of water

  • Various food colouring / paint

  • Ice lolly sticks / Pasta

  • Ice cube tray

Method

  • Put the water evenly into the ice tray.

  • Add a tiny drop of your chosen food colourings / paint to each mould, and mix well.

  • Add a stick to each mould.

  • Put in the freezer overnight.

  • When you want to use them, pull each out with the stick then get painting!

Be careful to cover your surfaces before painting as the food colouring can stain. 

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Explore the Maze

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You will need

  • Zip lock bag

  • Flour

  • Water

  • Paint / food colouring

  • Washing up liquid

  • Stones / beads / marbles

  • Bowl

  • Permanent marker

Method

  • Start by adding flour and water to the bowl and mixing to get a gloopy texture (about 3 parts water to 1 part flour)

  • Add washing up liquid (if the bag breaks it will reduce staining) and a drop of food colouring or a tablespoon of paint. 

  • Lay your bag on a flat surface and draw a maze on one side, you can make it whatever level is suitable for your child. 

  • Add the liquid to the bag until it forms a thin layer, covering the base of the bag when laid flat. 

  • Use a stone or bead to navigate the maze, you could always add more and have a race!

Explore with as many designs as you can think of.

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Cloud Dough

You will need

  • Oil

  • Flour

  • Paint (powdered paint works best)

  • Bowl

  • Tray (or something else to play on)

Method

  • Mix together 8 parts flour with 1 part oil. Add a couple drops of paint or a teaspoon of powder paint. You can add more paint to create a bolder colour.

  • Make each colour separately and then add them onto a tray ready to be used!

    Crumble like sand and mould like dough.

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Skittle Patterns

You will need

  • Skittles

  • Water

  • White plate / tray

Method

  • Arrange your skittles on the plate however you want to, try to alternate the colours

  • Slowly add water, push any skittles back into the pattern if they move

  • Watch the colour seep out and create a pattern

  • Try with vinegar or different temperatures of water... is there a difference?

   How many patterns can you make?

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Potato Printing

You will need

  • Potatoes

  • Knife

  • Paint

  • Paper

  • Plate / Tupperware lid (to put pain on)

Method

  • Cut your potatoes in half. Carve the shape onto the flat side of the potato and then slice from the side to remove the extra potato.

  • Get out the paint and spread it on your plate.

  • Put each potato in the paint and make sure the surface is evenly covered.

  • Print the potato onto the paper in any pattern you choose.

   What shapes will you choose to print?

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You will need

  • surgical gloves

  • fillers e.g. sand, mud, playdough, water, rice 

  • food colouring or paint (add washing up liquid to avoid staining if it spills)

Method

  • Put two gloves on one hand and pull off together.

  • Fill the inside glove with one of your fillers, make sure each finger is full and some of the palm.

  • Tie the wrist as tightly as possible.

  • Tie some string tightly around the wrist, below the knot.

  • Hang the hand or place them somewhere that is accessible to your child. 

Keep an eye on the gloves to make sure they don't spill! 

Small World

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You will need

  • A clear space

  • Coloured / patterned sheet

  • Toys from a theme (e.g. under the sea, zoo, town)

  • Items from around your house

  • Sticks, stones, sand, soil

Method

  • Start by laying down your sheet somewhere with space around for children to play.

  • Add sections to the 'world' like a pile of rocks (mountains), some leaves (forest), a white t shirt (ice) depending on what your theme is.

  • You can add water and paint in a tray to create lava or the ocean.

  • House plants can form a forest and red lentils a beach.

Be as imaginative as you can with whatever you can find around the house!

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Animal Jigsaw

You will need

  • Paper

  • Computer and printer (or head to your local library)

  • Card / Empty cereal box

  • Scissors

Method

  • Print out some pictures of your child's favourite animal and cut them out.

  • Stick all of your pictures onto the card and cut out leaving a small outline.

  • Cut each image into 2 or more pieces,

  • Enjoy putting the pieces back together.

    If it gets too easy you can always cut them into smaller pieces!

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