Arctic Playdough

A couple of weeks ago, T and I did a few activities around the theme of the Arctic. Playdough is always a popular choice of activity in our house and I love that it keeps both children entertained in different ways. I decided I would put together an Arctic Playdough invitation for them.

When it comes to playdough, I like to change things up a bit and so I don’t always put out the same things for them to use. As well as traditional playdough tools such as cutters and a rolling pin, we often use Loose Parts in our play. We have used things such as: natural objects; toy animals; matchsticks; lolly sticks; strings of beads; glass gems; body parts from Mr Potato Head; cupcake cases; candles; sequins; whole spices – as you can see, there is a wealth of options! Choosing different objects to use in their play inspires their imagination and is a catalyst for creativity.

For the Arctic Playdough, I added blue food colouring and a generous amount of silver glitter! As well as the dough, I put out:

  • A collection of Arctic animals
  • Blue and green glass gems
  • Shells
  • Some pieces of fir I’d saved from our Christmas tree
  • Wooden stamps
  • Strings of silver beads
Blue playdough squashed to make an island. It is edged by silver beads, and there is a walrus in the foreground. In the background, there are two fir tree branches standing in the dough, with a reindeer and an arctic wolf standing between them. There are also two shells.
An Arctic Island

T spent about an hour and a half completely absorbed in storytelling. She started off making an island and rescuing lots of the animals, and then chose to marry two of the animals and spent a long time building and decorating a space for the ceremony. She was talking all the while to herself, totally engrossed in her play, and bringing in some of the knowledge she’d acquired while learning about the Arctic.

Blue playdough is squashed on to a table. Four wooden stampers are arranged in a rectangle, and silver beads are draped between them. To the sides are fir tree branches. Under the bead canopy, there is a wolf and a reindeer facing the camera, with a beluga whale, seal and walrus in the foreground facing the other animals. On the playdough there are also some glass gems and shells.
The wedding!

For A, the activity was all about exploring and experimenting! Playdough is a great fine motor activity, as he spend a lot of time squashing, squeezing, pressing, and picking up small objects. He was also pushing things in to the dough and looking at the prints he had made when he took them away (encouraged by his big sister, who adores being his teacher!)

For more invitations to play using playdough, have a look at some of these other ideas!

a blue glittery ball of playdough is surrounded by arctic toys, glass gems, shells, beads, fir and wooden stampers. On it are the words 'arctic playdough'.

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