I was digging around in my archives over on the old site and I came across this sweet post from 2013!
My little gang love animals! So a recent visit to a local farm and the acquisition of a couple of ducks lead to learning all about farm animals.
Using this interest in farm animals I set up an invitation to play using our play dough stash, farm animals, matchsticks, an assortment of pom poms, bottle tops and beads. I was inspired by the blog At Home With Ali with our play prompts, from her post Another Chicken World.
Here is my play prompt. My intention here was to show that matchsticks can be made to stand in play dough, instead of the usual laying down of the sticks. Also I wanted to show how the bottle tops could be used in the scene. I love how Strawberry (two years old) used the bottle tops to scoop play dough with! I love that she got creative with this play prompt!
Chook (3 years old) adopted the matchsticks as fences idea and gave it his own spin! I love the fences that define the outside edge, even though the container edge is there.
Prior to this activity we had read Fergus To The Rescue by Tony Maddox. Chook’s dramatic play creation includes all the animals from the story and water to represent the flood. He played for hours with his play dough scene, making up little stories about the animals needing rescued from the flood. He also asked us to keep it available to him to play with over the next few days.
Ooffa (2 years old) took the play dough activity outside the box! You’ll notice in the first photo his play dough prompt was all nicely presented to him. He immediately proceeded to take down the entire scene and up-ended the play dough! He then created this little mound, added farm animals and stuck bottle tops into it. Ooffa decided to use the beads to thread onto the matchsticks (we’ve been doing quite a bit of threading recently, love that he recreated that experience in this play prompt)!
Multi-age Play Dough Activity Tips:
- I pre-prepared the invitation to play in our play area for them to discover.
- I provided each child with their own invitation to play in a shallow container.
- Extra materials and animals were made available in the middle of the table.
- Strawberry and Ooffa were more interested in exploring the materials of the play prompt.
- Chook’s imagination is in full bloom now, so he was provided with a separate space, after his initial exploration, in which he could create his play scenes.
- Reflective tip: Until Ooffa out-grows his mouthing stage I wont include beads in the play prompt for a while. A separate container could be provided to an older child when they move to their separate play space.
What interests have inspired creative imaginative play around your place lately? Let us know in the comments.
Chook – 3.7 years old
Strawberry – 26 months
Ooffa – 26 months