Wednesday, 31 August 2016

Printing activities

I have been looking for some simple printing ideas that I can use with paint and chocolate with some of the families.  Here are some fab, cheap ideas that can be used time and time again.  

1. How about this fab rolling pin?  Funky foam shapes have been glued onto an old rolling pin ready to be rolled into some fab messy chocolate or paint.  To find out more about this idea pop on over to Filth Wizardry  Lots of other fantastic ideas too!

2. How's this for a great invitation to have fun?  Lots of recyclable materials instead of brushes etc.  Pop on over to

 Read more about the value of providing "invitations" for children to explore and learn & see all the learning involved in this simple activity. Remember that children need to create and explore, they don't need it to be a specific item at the end. Allow this and don't push them to think they must make something "real.":

3. Bubble wrap painting.  How cheap and easy is this one?  If you havent got a rolling pin you could use an empty drinks bottle and wrap the bubble wrap around it.  For more ideas for this and more pop on over to

kids use their whole body when printing with bubble wrap and rollers:

4. Flower printing.  This is a really cute idea instead of using paintbrushes.  For more brilliant ideas pop on over to Learning 4 Kids

Flower painting activities for kids and toddlers. Perfect for spring and summer!:

5. Bottle top printing.  Recycle bottle tops and glue funky foam shapes to the tops of them. Cheap and cheerful and lots of fun. Find out more over on

6. And don't forget the good old potato printing.  One i remember fondly from my childhood days.    

<a href="" rel="nofollow" target="_blank">rosanamodugno.hub...</a>:

Tuesday, 23 August 2016

Beach scavenger hunt

If your going to the beach while we have some nice weather at last or going on holiday, how about popping on over to and then printing out this fab beach scavenger hunt sheet?  You could even laminate to use over and over again.

Mud, mud glorious mud...

One of my favourite things in the world to play with is good old mud.  I love squelching and squishing in it with my wellies as well as my hands making mud pies.  

There are so many things you can do with mud so you can only imagine how happy I am that I have just come across this amazing lady and her site....Creative Star Learning Ltd with lots of great ideas and information and lots more.

You can find ideas for mud mapping, a dinosaur swamp, drippy castles, smelling mud and wait for it........a mud 'Master chef'!

And who knew that there was an international mud much fun to be had!

picture from

Sunday, 21 August 2016

Learning through play

This valuable information can be found on the 'Family Lives' website

This is a great site which has advice on so many different areas including:
  • Pregnancy and Baby
  • Toddler / Preschool
  • Primary
  • Secondary
  • Teenager
  • Family life
  • Bullying
  • Divorce and Separation

Learning through play

Play is one of the main ways in which children learn. It helps to build self worth by giving a child a sense of his or her own abilities and to feel good about themselves. Because it’s fun, children often become very absorbed in what they are doing. In turn, this helps them develop the ability to concentrate. Providing children with a range of playthings will help them learn in a number of ways:
  • Sand and water play can be an early introduction to science and maths, eg learning that water is fluid, not solid, and that it can be measured in different sized containers.
  • Playing with dough, drawing and painting pictures, dressing up, playing with dolls can encourage creativity, imagination and expression of feelings.
  • Building blocks, jigsaws and shape sorters can help with recognising different shapes and sizes, putting things in order and developing logic.
  • Playing ball games, dancing, running, climbing all help to develop body movement, strength, flexibility and co-ordination skills. 
  • Games help with turn taking, sharing and mixing with others.
  • Singing, playing simple music instruments help to develop rhythm, listening and hearing.
It's important that learning is fun at this age. It needs to be about doing things with them that they like. They might find unusual ways of doing things - for a toddler, building blocks aren't just for making towers, and paint can be used without a brush! Show them how things work, but if they want to experiment, let them.
Don't push your child too hard. Children develop in their own ways and in their own time. Try not to compare them to other children. You can also encourage reading, by reading to and with them. Look at the pictures together; this will help younger children make sense of the words.
It's also good to talk to them a lot, about everyday things while you are cooking or cleaning. This will give you a chance to teach them how things work and they will be able to ask you questions. Get ready for lots of “why’s?”

Baby and toddler play ideas

I have just come across these fab ideas over on the NHS web page for play ideas for babies and toddlers.  There are ideas for playing safely with water, reading with your baby, play ideas form 4 months to 30 months and some great advice about toy safety.  To find out more head over to the page using the link below.

Wednesday, 17 August 2016

Glitter and hair gel squidgy bag play

Here's a video of the glitter and hair gel squidgy bag in action.  Very relaxing sensory play!

Hair gel and glitter messy bag

Here's another really easy version to put together for a messy bag without the mess.  

You will need:
  • A zip lock bag (or a sandwich bag with a good seal for a smaller version)
  • Hair gel (I used two pots of the cheaper gel at 50p per pot)
  • A selection of coloured glitter

Firstly add the gel to the bag and close securely.  Smear the gel into all the corners with your hands.
Then open the bag and add the different coloured glitter, seal securely again.

Then have fun mixing the glitter together with the gel in the bag using your hands.  I loved the way that this one ended up looking like a very starry scene as well as feeling so relaxing to squidge the glittery gel around the bag.

Toothpaste messy bag

How's this for a quick and easy idea for a toothpaste messy play bag?  Great too for children who don't like to get messy but enjoy the sensory feel.  Great too for early mark making.  

You will need:

  • A zip lock bag ( a sandwich bag with a good seal will do too for a smaller version)
  • Cheap toothpaste (I used three tubes for this at approximately 30p each)

Squirt the tubes into the bag....and zip it up.

Smear the toothpaste into every corner with your hands.

Then your ready to start making marks........use your fingers or you could use a stick.

Messy play workshop

I had a fantastic time at the Afasic Cymru family fun day yesterday.  Lots of fun had by all. 
Chocolate play, Gloop, home made play dough orange scented and lots more.....I can't wait for the next one.

Friday, 12 August 2016

Fairy play dough

I really want to make this fabulous Fairy Play dough.  Easy and cheap to make and it looks so inviting to play with using only three ingredients.  You can find out what they are over at  

So many other art & craft and sensory ideas plus much more so pop on over and have a look.  You won't be disappointed.

Colour match outdoor hunt

I have just made a quick colour match sheet to take on a walk into the woodland area later.  You don't have to put one together on the computer you could get the felt pens / crayons out and get your child to colour in some areas to make a colour match sheet ready to go.

The good thing about this is that if your going to an area you know quite well you can add colours that know will definitely natch some key finds....leaves, flowers, twigs etc.  Otherwise you can make a general one.

And another 25 fab busy bags

I think I am getting obsessed but here's another link to make many more....

10 Easy Busy Bags

Busy bags

I am a huge fan of busy bags for children.  They are easy to put together and don't cost a lot to make so again we have our low cost / no cost element.  

There are so many different activities you can make to put into the bags.  They are designed to be simple and fun and are fantastic for taking away on holiday, use in the car or take out and about to restaurants, doctors etc.

I have taken these ideas from which is a great site, but if you pop busy bags into your search engine you will find so many more ideas.

To go with these bags there is also a fantastic video from You Tube to show you more.

Sensory Gloop and Ice

Previously we have looked at making Gloop (cornflour and water mix) and Ice play.  So when I saw this I just had to share the idea and the page here for you to visit.......Sensory Gloop and Ice together!!!

Wow...what a fantastic sensory experience for children to explore together.  Pop on over to to find out more and to check out all the amazing ideas that will help you get through the holidays and beyond.

Toilet roll Butterfly

How about making one of these to add to your Fairy village or town?  Or you could hang them up or make a few into a mobile.

This picture is taken from where you will find so many fantastic ideas for much more so pop on over and take a look.

You will need:

  • An empty toilet or kitchen roll tube
  • Paint
  • Cardboard for the wings and antennae (you could also use pipe cleaners for these)
  • Felt tip pens
  • Cut up tissue / craft paper to decorate
  • Glitter
  • Glue
  • Tape

Fairy houses

How cute are these little Fairy houses found on that can be made from empty toilet rolls or kitchen paper rolls?

So easy to make and you could make different onse to make a little village or a fairy town.  

Low cost, no cost....

You will need:

  • Empty toilet paper or kitchen paper rolls
  • Cake cases
  • Scraps of different papers to decorate them (wallpaper, tissue paper, wrapping paper etc)
  • Felt tip pens
  • Sellotape  / glue

Simple play....

Yesterday I looked after my friends boys for a few hours. As my boys are in their teenage years and hers a lot younger, I was in my element to be able to be a play mate.

First things first.... The play mobile came out and and they wanted me to help them set up a caravan park. BUT this wasn't just any old caravan the time they had finished I wanted to book myself in for two weeks or longer.

The imagination, creative skills, sharing, taking turns, listening, language skills that were taking place was a joy to observe. The best bit of all it didn't come a penny.

Then they decided they wanted to make something....the craft box was looking a little low as they had been having lots of fun during the holidays so far.  I spotted that Mum had been shoe shopping for them so we emptied the boxes and had a starting point.  We raided the kitchen and found paper plates, plastic cups, kitchen paper, kitchen foil, the stapler and sellotape.  Add a scissors and some coloured pencils and we set to work on Space themed play boxes for their Lego figures.

We had so much fun, I didn't want to leave....until the next time x

Messy play bag

This morning I have had a fun and relaxing time making and playing with this messy play bag.  Messy play is a great sensory fun experience and it can help children to relax too due to the sensation of some of the items used and how it feels on their hands as they play such as gloop, jelly, chocolate etc.

However there are some children that for whatever reason don't like messy play and so this is a really good idea where they can still join in without the mess.

You will need:

  • A zip lock bag (You can get these in the pound shop or similar, or you can use food bags that close at the top with a good seal)
  • A piece of white paper (which I taped to the back of the bag so that any marks made would be more visible to see)
  • Paint in a choice of colours ( I used acrylic paint but you can use any squirty children's paints you have at hand)

At the end of my play session I opened the bag, popped a piece of paper inside halfway in and smoothed the paint over to take a print.  I loved the way the finished product came out with so many different textures on the paper.

Have fun x