This section is also useful for families who are having children and young people to stay for the first time and want some ideas to make their visitors feel welcome.
|Art and craft session using patterns, textures and smells||Put shaving foam, jelly, sand or cornflour into a tray. Use spoons, hands and shape cutters to make patterns and explore textures and smells. You can add food colouring and glitter to the cornflour.||Apron
|Homemade Playdough||Playdough is a fun, clay-like substance that children love. It can be expensive to buy but it’s very easy to make at home at a fraction of the cost. Just mix 1/2 a cup of salt, 1/2 a cup of water, 1 cup of flour, a few drops of food dye or glitter (any colour, be creative!). You can adapt the Playdough for more sensory play by adding rice or porridge oats to give a more textured feeling. Use shape cutters to make interesting shapes.||Apron
Porridge oats (optional)
|Water play||Fill a deep tray/container with water. Add toy fish to make it into an aquarium or pond. Use funnels and food colouring to add to the fun.||Apron
Deep tray or other container
|Sand play||Fill a deep tray/container with sand. Use spoons and small containers to make sand castles. You can also make flags using lollipop sticks and paper.||Deep tray or other container
|Gardening||Plant sunflower seeds or green bean seeds in a small pot. Water them and watch them grow on the window sill.||Earth
Small plant pots
|Painting, printing and modelling||Painting: use different size brushes, rollers.
Hand printing: make into shapes of trees, angels, etc.
Leaf printing: use in conjunction with one of the Outdoor activities.
Use straws for blow painting.
Junk modelling – gluing and sticking: use empty cardboard boxes, tubs etc.
Food printing: use fruit and vegetables such as carrots, mushrooms, apples and potatoes to make paintings and art work.
Fruit and vegetables
|Scavenger hunt||Write a list (or use pictures for non-readers) of items to collect from the garden or around the home.
Give children a set time to collect as many items as possible.
Points to be given for good team work, creativity, etc. (ie. NOT for coming first!)
|List of items to collect
Clipboards and pencils
Tray to display collected items
|Role Play and Dressing up||Post office: make a post box from empty cardboard boxes. Write letters and use envelopes and stamps.
Food Shop: use food from around the house to set up a shop, you can also use empty tubs, boxes etc. Use/make play money.
Hospital: set up a hospital bed on chair or sofa, use teddies and dolls as patients and use plasters and bandages to fix wounds.
Used postage stamps
Writing paper and envelopes
|Music and movement||Homemade instruments: fill empty bottles with rice to make maracas. Empty coffee pots and butter tubs can be made into drums.
Dance along to nursery rhymes/action songs: the “Hokey cokey”, “Walking through the Jungle”, “Wheels on the Bus”, “Wind the Bobbin Up”, ”1,2,3,4,5, once I caught a fish alive”.
|Empty coffee pots
Empty margarine tubs
Empty plastic bottles
|Den building||Collect lots of large boxes and cover with sheets, duvet covers, blankets. Brooms are useful as tent poles!||Blankets
|Cookery||Cake decorating/smiley face biscuits/pizzas etc. Children to decorate.||Shop bought or pre-prepared muffins, fairy cakes, rich tea biscuits, individual pizza bases
Decorations (sweet and savoury)