Last week we found ourselves with a beautiful spring day and a tree full of lemons, so we decided to make some lemon scented rice for sensory play. I’d love to say there was an exact science to our recipe, but we just made it up as we went along. I’ll try and give you an idea, so that you can make it at home too.
Lemon Scented Sensory Rice
You will need:
- white rice (we used about 8 cups)
- lemon zest (we used 4 lemons)
- lemon juice (from 2 lemons)
- yellow food colouring (about a teaspoon)
- 1 large zip lock bag
- 1 large baking tray
How to make it:
- Pour the rice, zest, juice and colouring into the zip lock bags (or any large container).
- Mix it around and around until all the rice is a lovely, lemon yellow.
- Add more yellow if you want more colour, but be warned that it might turn orange if you add too much!
- Add more zest if you want more lemon scent.
- Tip the rice into the tray and leave in the sun to dry….. or just start playing right away like we did. You might get a little yellow on your hands, but it washed off easily enough :)
We tipped the rice into Pebble’s play table and she added some bark, flowers, rocks, a bowl of water and a few of her favourite toys. She sat under the lemon tree playing happily, chatting her herself and telling stories. It really was a very pleasant way to spent a morning.
Do your kids like playing with rice?
Sponsored by Woolworths
Most kids love animals – they love learning about them, caring for them and pretending to be them. I was inspired to try this Aussie Animals Charades game with Pebble this week after collecting Aussie Animals trading cards from Woolworths. Woolworths and Taronga Conservation Society have launched a fun collection of 108 Aussie Animals cards, helping to educate Aussie kids about native animals.
Our Aussie Animals adventure began with our visit to the Woolworths with Pebble in her kangaroo onsie, complete with her joey in her pouch. She hopped up and down the aisles and gave the other shoppers a bit of a giggle. When we had finished our shop we happily gathered up our collection of Aussie Animals cards. Lucky for us the cards are free with every $20 spent in Woolworths.
Pebble’s favourite card is the Ulysses Butterfly but she is quite fascinated with them all. She especially loves learning about which animals are dangerous. I’m quite enjoying learning some new facts too – did you know that a Barking Owl can eat other animals the size of a Sulphur-crested Cockatoo? And that a Green Jumping Spider forces blood into it’s legs to jump up to 25 times it’s own height. Eeeek!
Aussie Animals Charades
You will need:
- a collection of Aussie Animals trading cards
- a curious kid (or three)
- place the cards into a box (we used an empty tissue box)
- take turns to choose a card from the box (no peeking!) and act out the animal that you’ve picked.
- other players guess which animal is being portrayed.
Make it easier:
- Choose five or six trading cards to put on display for all players to see. Each player acts out one of the animals of their choice from the selection.
Make it harder:
More fun with Aussie Animals
Visit the Woolworths Aussie Animals website for lots of fun ways to play, cook, create and trade cards.
Which Aussie animal would your kids like to learn about?
More games for kids:
We have some soap flakes left over from making crayons and I was trying to find some fun and creative ways to use them up. What better way to play than by making foamy ice creams with soap flake foam? We made soap flake foam then had fun playing with bowls and an ice cream scoop to create delicious looking (and completely inedible!!) ice creams. Pebble decorated the ‘ice cream’ with ‘sprinkles’ made from the little bits of paper from our hole punch (thanks to our hole punch art!). Next she wanted to colour the foam, so she tried mixing and stirring with some powder paint and ended up with a fantastic sludge :) Here’s how to make your own soap flake foam:
Here’s how to make your own soap flake foam.
Soap Flake Foam
1 – 2 cups soap flakes
Place the soap flakes in a large mixing bowl. Add enough hot water to just cover the soap flakes. Whip up into a foamy lather with an electric beater.
How do you think your kids would like to play with foam?
Looking for more fun ways to play? Try out these ideas:
Imaginary play is still Pebble’s number one favourite thing to do. I think if someone were to calculate it at least 50% of her sentences begin with “Let’s pretend…” (in case you were wondering, the other 40% are “I’m hungry” and 10% “But I’m not tired”).
Here are some new fun ideas for pretend play with kids, featuring some ideas from the Kids Co-Op, including Honey Bee Books, Housing a Forest, House of Burke, Munchkin and Bean, Paint on the Ceiling and B-Inspired Mama.
Now for the Weekly Kids Co-Op
Balloons are a very handy play and learning tool to have in the house. If you have a bag of balloons there is so much playing, creating and learning to be done. Try some of these awesome ideas.
- Blow up balloons, throw streamers around the room, put on some music and play pretend parties (pictured). You could even write out invites and make a pretend birthday cake with play dough.
- Make a cute squeezy ball for sensory play (Laughing Kids Learn).
- Science fun with this DIY Water Fountain (Learn with Play at Home)
- Science play and sensory fun with balloons and water (Teach Preschool)
- A super simple balloon game to encourage eye tracking (Lessons Learnt Journal)
- Create a balloon surprise birthday countdown (Imagination Tree)
- Water balloon maths! (No Time for Flash Cards)
- Make Bouncy balloon paintings (Picklebums)
- Make and play balloon rockets (A Little Learning for Two)
- Outdoor fun with balloon sprinklers (Adventures at Home with Mum)
- Floating fish craft (At Home with Ali)
- Back yard water park with a water balloon pool (Learning 4 Kids)
- Balloon kite (Paint on the Ceiling)
- DIY Walking Balloon Pet (Green Owl Art)
- Water balloon sight words (Royal Baloo)
- Fine motor fishing fun (Mummy Musings and Mayhem)
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