Stuck for something to do that’s creative, imaginative, and interactive? Try these easy ideas of things to make or do with play dough to pretend, create and learn!
Play dough. We’ve made tracks with trucks and smooshed balls.
But then we got stuck. Until I found all these creative and cool things to make and ways to play with our dough!
35+ Ideas to Pretend, Create & Learn with Play Dough
No more excuses to skip the play dough! Now I’ve got lots of easy ideas to think outside the box for creative play.
Add a little science to your play dough with a cool homemade play dough recipe!
Play dough will never be boring again!
Pretend with Play Dough:
Play dough makes a great jumping off place for pretend play! Try these 6 creative ideas to get started.
- DIY a construction site from Teach Preschool.
- Create your very own pizzeria like The Imagination Tree.
- Make a play dough cake shop from Preschool Play.
- Create a little island together like The Chocolate Muffin Tree shares with us.
- Try your baking skills with a pretend play bakery from Imagination Soup.
- Grab some leaves and make a play dough hair salon.
- Frugal Fun 4 Boys shares a fun digging in play dough activity.
- Try some fine motor practice and pretend with play dough, hammer and golf tees!
- Scoop and serve with a DIY ice cream shop.
Make & Create Ideas with Play Dough:
Play dough is perfect for creative art projects. Let your child’s imagination soar with these 6 activities of things to make and do with play dough!
- Get wild with not so scary monster creations from Fantastic Fun and Learning.
- DIY your own hungry caterpillars like The Chocolate Muffin Tree.
- Squashed Tomatoes shows how to make your own little play dough snail friends.
- Why not design your own little robots like Counting Coconuts.
- Build a tiny little play dough nest with Kids Activities Blog.
- No Time for Flash Cards has a fun play dough faces activity.
- Go exploring and create your own bug fossils like Plain Vanilla Mom.
- Decorate at home with DIY play dough suncatchers!
- Turn your play dough into the canvas and draw on it like Home Grown Friends.
Ideas of Things to Add to Play Dough:
Know what’s fun? Mixing things into play dough!
Try these creative additions to your next play dough adventures.
- Explore with spaghetti like Having Fun at Home.
- Add in mini umbrellas like Crayon Freckles.
- Nature Store gets crafty with straws.
- Or why not try building with the straws.
- No straws… Try building with toothpicks like Play Based Classroom.
- Add sprinkles like Mama Instincts and make some tasty looking cookies.
- Get sparkly and try adding glitter like Simply So Good.
- Mama Papa Bubba added sea shells to make a beach theme.
- You can add simple sticks and make monsters, people or snowmen like Fun Learning for Kids did.
- Add gems to create jewelry and treasures like No Time for Flash Cards.
Ways to Learn with Play Dough:
Play dough is a great teaching and learning tool. Make letters, numbers, and patterns to help your child learn early academic skills!
- Check out this inherited traits and genetics learning activity from 2 Kids 2 Guinea Pigs.
- Work on cutting and scissors skills from Tot School.
- Match colors and strengthen fine motor with this beads push in activity.
- Make animal outlines and match prints with this activity from Confidence Meets Parenting.
- Work on color recognition with this cute turkey play dough activity.
- Mom to 2 Lil Posh Divas shares an easy building words activity.
- Teach about textures with Kids Activities Blog.
- Trace to spell your name with play dough for name recognition ideas and fine motor practice.
- Trace shapes with a shapes mat from Royal Baloo.
- Work on counting with dice and play a play dough monster making game together.
- Learn basic fractions with Lucky Little Learners.
- Do a little more counting with eggs and nest for more math learning from The Art Kit.
I’ve found that homemade play dough is far superior to the store-bought kind.
It’s softer, lasts longer and you can make whatever color you like just for that day. Not to mention adding fun ingredients to the mix!