Creative Kids Project # 8

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Playing with Dough

My kids are given just playdough and a (non-serrated) butter knife.

That’s all…the rest is imagination.

Yesterday, a ten year old made a melting snowman on a beach. It was equipped with a boom box and cooler and towel. How cool is that?

When it comes to creativity, less really IS more. The fewer materials the better a project works. I find that I have to bore the kids into some of these projects. I just leave it on my table and what kid of any age can resist playdough?


The lazier the project director, the more creative the experience!

Here is a good recipe for homemade playdough:


  • 1 Cup of Flour
  • 1/2 Cup of Salt
  • 1 Cup of Warm Water
  • 2 Teaspoons of Cream of Tartar
  • 1Tablespoon of Cooking Oil
  • Food Coloring

Step 1: The Cooking

Put all of the ingredients into a pan.  I’ve just realized that I made a mistake when trying out this recipe – I missed out the oil, which would probably explain why it was a little dry.

A pan full of wet ingredients
A pan full of wet ingredients

Slowly heat the ingredients making sure you stir continuously. The mixture should be quite smooth but it will soon start to stiffen. Watch out for lumps forming:

Smooth Mixture Turning Lumpy
Smooth Mixture Turning Lumpy

The mixture will begin to stiffen very quickly – at least it did for me. The website I got this play dough recipe from said that it might take a while so I guess it varies. You’ll need to put some effort into the stirring at this stage. When your mixture looks like the picture below, it’s just about ready:

The Mixture is Ready
The Mixture is Ready

Step 2: Kneading the Dough

Take the dough out of your pan and roll it onto a suitable surface.

The dough should be light and springy. It’s lovely stuff actually, I don’t know why I never tried this before! Knead it for a few minutes like you would knead a bread dough and it should look something like this:

A Ball of Dough
A Ball of Dough
Adding food coloring to the water makes colored dough.

4 thoughts on “Creative Kids Project # 8

  1. Another Super one. My eldest daughter, (yes, the who tried to squirt out the sun, and found a monkey in the tree) used to work with head start kids, and she made lots of homemade play dough, too.

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