Thursday, 27 October 2011

Sensory Play: Cloud Dough

Pinterest has done it again!  This is the pin I found to this fun alternative to play sand.
Cloud dough is easy (and cheap) to make and worked beautifully with our sand moulds.  The recipe calls for 8 cups of flour to 1 cup of baby oil, just mix together and that's it ready to use. I have to say that although the original post from Flights of Whimsy calls for baby oil I used cooking oil instead.  Baby oil is actually toxic.  If ingested it can cause vomiting and has been known to cause fatal asphyxiation when the vomit blocks the windpipe.  Of course in these quantities it is not very much oil and if the children you are preparing it for are old enough not to put everything in their mouths then it does smell nice  BUT for us it was a definite no-no.  A, being the autistic kid he is, insists on exploring everything with his mouth despite being an 8 yo so just in case we went with the safer option.  To make up for the lack of lovely smell we added some ground cinnamon to ours.  
B really loved the smell and thought it smelled "yummy like cookies".  The sand moulds went down well, then he decided that it was "snow" and went and got Bertie the Bus and drove him round and round into "snow-drifts" and pretended to rescue Bertie again and again.  We also made "snowballs" by squeezing the mixture together and then made it "snow" by sprinkling the mixture from a height into the bowl; good for fine motor skills.  It held his attention for over an hour and a half, something playdough has never done.
The clean-up was also easier than I expected since the mixture was not greasy or oily as I suspected it might be, a dustpan and brush followed by a damp cloth was all that was needed.  All in all something I would make again.

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