Messy Play Ideas

If your kids are anything like mine they will need occupying to prevent disaster caused by boredom and one way to do this is challenge their tendency to destroy into messy play

Messy play does indeed cause mess so be prepared but honestly I think having children causes mess and at some point all mothers have to relax about that and abandon the white sofa!  In order to limit the mess I have bought builders trays to put on the floor and this is where we create the mess and all our messy play centres around this tray.  You can pick them up for about £15 from DIY stores and honestly they are invaluable.  So here are some ideas for things you can do for messy play:

  • Mix cornflour and water in the tray and let them experiment with the texture.  They can squish and mould it but then it changes as it dries
  • Put different coloured paint into the tray and let them stand in it.  This does get very slippy so you need to be very much on hand.  I buy big rolls of paper from Ikea and lay this next to the tray so we can do footprints
  • Spray shaving foam (get non perfumed) into the tray and let them loose.  This is very messy but they love it and it all washes out
  • On a sunny day when you can’t face the full on paddling pool a little water and some small boats in the tray keeps them amused, but be warned they will still get very wet even though you are sure there was only a tiny bit of water to start with 
  • Put sand and small rocks into the tray and some dinosaur toys and let them create a Jurassic world.  You can let them loose with food colouring to make different coloured sand if you are feeling brave
  • Mix oats and water in a bowl or a tray.  They like to mix things about and see how the water changes the texture
  • Make mouldable sand by mixing play sand with cornflour and food colouring.  If you feel brave you could let them help with the process or make it in advance and just let them okay with it

So these are some activities that have kept my little ones occupied and helped to distract our two year old from his permanent quest to hunt down pens and draw on my walls.  Messy play is messy but can be contained unlike his wall drawing exploits or his brothers attempts to reorganise the playroom! My advice is embrace the mess and let them have a blast!!

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