Valentine Play Doh [Invitation to Play]
Providing "invitation to play" activities for toddlers is so important for their development! What this basically means and looks like is providing a variety of materials and letting the child use them/play with them however they want. It allows for creativity, imagination, thinking outside the box, etc. And often times, they come up with ways to play that we, as adults, would not have even thought of. It is so fun to watch them explore and come up with ideas on their own.
I bought this red tray from a grocery store in town but I'm pretty sure you can typically find them at the dollar store too. They are great for activities like this because they allow you to organize a variety of materials for play. Most of the materials I set out were things that I already had from teaching preschool a few years ago. I want to say that they all came from the dollar store, or the dollar spot at Target. I set out mini heart-shaped containers, heart-shaped cookie cutters, mini Valentine erasers, and heart-shaped vase filler beads. We used purple and pink play doh to keep things festive.
Kade was literally entertained by this activity on and off all day. And even requested it for a few days after. He especially loved squishing the erasers and the heart beads into the play doh (great for building fine motor skills) and making "polka dots" in the play doh with his fingers (great for sensory play). We even attempted to sort some of the mini erasers into the heart-shaped containers for something different.
Here are some pictures of this invitation to play in action:
With all of the small pieces involved, this was definitely a supervised activity. Even though Kade is almost 2, I still worry about him trying to put one of the little pieces in his mouth. I have caught him considering tasting the play doh once or twice before too so I just try to stay close by. ;) If you are too worried about the small pieces, you could always just stick with the cookie cutters- they are great with play doh!
Thanks for popping in! :)