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So… how do you feel about play dough? Many of us have certain craft materials we can’t stand to have in our home. For me, it’s glitter. I can’t bear the way it sticks to everything and Never. Goes. Away.
What about play dough?
When my three boys get it out, there’s always a mess. Inevitably a piece or five is left on the floor, and our busy baby girl heads right for it. I often find a piece stuck to my sock. And if it gets in a carpet or rug it’s impossible to get out.
Is it really worth it?
Yes. And today I’m sharing six reasons why.
Why play dough is good for kids
1) It’s great for fine motor skills. Kids really need to have strong muscles in their hands for writing, cutting, and other tasks. Think of all they do with play dough to build those muscles: roll, flatten, chop, cut, poke, squash, pinch, cut, pound, and manipulate!
2) Play dough is great for the imagination. There is no end to what kids can pretend with play dough, especially if you have the right props. Props? Yes, the secret to making play dough fun is having other toys go with it – plastic cars, toy animals, utensils, blocks. You’d be amazed at all the things you already have that you can pair with play dough.
3) If your kid needs some calming, put him at the table with some play dough. For many children, it’s a great emotional outlet. Have siblings who can’t stop picking at each other? Pull out some play dough and give all of you some peace. Just be sure to put them at separate tables. 😉
4) Play dough really engages the senses, which is so important for young children. When you use play dough with different media (buttons, pasta, rocks, and more) you create a multi-sensory experience. You can take it farther and use Kool-aid and other tricks to make scented play dough.
5) Using play dough can help develop your child’s social skills and language. Talk to him about what he’s doing and making. If he’s playing with a friend or sibling, he’ll have opportunities to interact.
6) Using play dough regularly will increase your child’s attention span. Seriously – I am amazed at how long this keeps my kids’ interest.