Messy Play

By | 5/09/2013 Leave a Comment
Some time ago I decided to organize a messy play date. It took me a while to get used to the idea that there will be no rules this time:) Since my play group is one man show I took my time to research ideas and organized everything in just a few weeks. Space was ticked (we could do mess in the garden:) and I bought all the necessary equipment. I limited myself to a few stations as I figured that since this may be a hit I might need to repeat the event with new ideas.

First station was a sand pit - pretty easy but always fun. I put some kitchen utensils there and a small bucket so kids could fill it in and dump it back to the pit or....outside:(
The other super easy messy and wet idea was water spray. It was the only thing my son played with as he not a messy kid:) He didn't want to put his hands into anything but hey - there are plenty kids out there that are not enjoying messy play. Out of 20 kids that joined our event we had 3 that didn't want to play.
One of my personal absolute favourites was colourful macaroni. It was very nice to touch, colours were bright and shinny (you may add some glitter if you wish) and girls were all over it creating salads, running their fingers through it or simply sorting it out between bins. At the end all landed on the floor and they walked on it! All you need is spaghetti boiled for just a few minutes until it is soft, drained and washed with cold water and add food colouring at the end. Unbelievable fun!

Boys favourite was a shaving cream section. We used 2 bottles of the cheapest shaving cream I could find and they were sprinkling it with old coffee grinds I was saving for over a week:) I add a bowl of colourful stones and marbles next to it so they can mix them together. Imagine that at the end even all the spaghetti ended up mixed with "whipped cream" shaving cream!
We also had a painting section with 2 big sheets of paper and some school tempera. Paper didn't quite stick to the wall so it landed on the grass. It was a fantastic idea as kids could paint on the paper, paint themselves, walk on it, make hand prints and in the end 2 super creative boys started stone painting! It was amazing! They found stones on the side of the garden, painted them purple and were throwing them on the paper so they leave big purple circles and splashes of paint! Well done boys!

Another simple idea was to put flattened boxes on the grass for some creative painting. I bought big brushes to cover more space and two colours of paint. I used school tempera but also home made finger paint. And they were painting everything but the boxes! Mostly themselves:)

I think the most unexpected activity was taking a shower! Lucia just turned some knobs and let the water clean her mess! It was truly amazing how much mess kids are capable of doing! She had so much fun and others joined. Some of them took it step further and jumped in the pool.

Let's face it - some of us really needed lots of cleaning up:)
We had an amazing morning and everyone liked the idea of messy play (probably more that it was not done in their own home:).  For me it was everything I hoped for and even more as kids were super creative and really got themselves into it. I love to see how they explore, touch, smell, eat and just learn. Although it was a bit hot (over 30C) and humid I think water helped a lot to cool down but I am afraid we need to wait with another play date until at least September.
Thank you all who came and played with us. Now you just need to watch the mess your kids will make in your own house:)))

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