It's a terrific idea to make play-dough with your kids each month. It stays soft and fresh in a plastic bag or Tupperware container for about 30 days but then needs to get refreshed. When you make another batch with a different color, texture, or scent, your children get excited about playing with it all over again. Since play-dough is ideal for building fine motor skills, young children should have access to it daily. I'd store ours on a low shelf in the pantry along with fun tools to use: a rolling pin, plastic knives, and a garlic press. I'd also include buttons, toothpicks, pegs, and marbles for creating designs. Sequins and glitter also had pizzazz.
My sons and I would make Gingerbread Play-Dough at the beginning of December, and it was always a favorite. What a terrific way to get in the holiday spirit! I'd put out my cookie cutter collection -- many of which were gingerbread men -- and the boys would play for hours: rolling, pounding, cutting, and pretending. There's no better way to strengthen those little fingers and hands for what comes ahead in kindergarten: holding a pencil, cutting with scissors, and drawing with crayons.
Boil the water. In another bowl, mix all the other ingredients. You will want enough spice to turn the dough light brown. Pour boiling water on top. Mix until the dough starts to pull away from the sides of the bowl. Put dough onto waxed paper and knead until it becomes soft and smooth.
Labels: Christmas Fun With the Kids