Little Ones Learning: Pumpkin Sensory Play!

Thursday, October 10, 2013

There are so many great ideas for pumpkin sensory play!  Sensory play is a great way to assist your child's development, and it's fun!  According to Danielle Steinberg, author of Developing and Cultivating Skills Through Sensory Play, children (and adults) learn best when they engage their senses.  It helps in your child's cognitive, linguistic (language), social, emotional, and physical development.   I won't go into all the details here, but take a look at the article and see for yourself!

I am blessed to spend my days with my 4 year old daughter, Grace, 1 1/2 year old daughter, Ada, and my 1 1/2 year old nephew, Lucas.  This week we had our first exploration with cloud dough.  Cloud dough is mold-able, like wet sand, and because it's made of flour and oil, it's non-toxic.  This is key for us because Ada and Lucas try to taste everything!

 I found some great directions for pumpkin cloud dough from Growing a Jeweled Rose.  

- 8 cups flour
- 1 cup vegetable oil
- pumpkin pie spice
- orange tempera paint or crushed chalk

The main ingredients for cloud dough are just flour and oil, in an 8:1 ratio.  That could mean 8 cups of flour and 1 cup of vegetable oil, or 4 cups of flour, 1/2 cup oil.  You get the gist.  Knead it together with your hands.  Add some pumpkin pie spice for a scent, and you can use orange tempera paint or crushed chalk to color your cloud dough.  I didn't happen to have tempera paint or orange chalk, so I tried some food coloring.  That did not work, so save yourself the effort.  The kids didn't mind that it just smells like pumpkin :).  I added in some measuring cups, play utensils and bowls, and some mini pumpkins, of course!

The kids had a great time exploring with the pumpkin cloud dough.  Grace especially loved it, and made all kinds of cupcakes and pies.  Lucas and Ada mostly wanted to carry around the mini pumpkins.  Works for me!  We will definitely be pulling this out again soon!

Below I compiled a list of some awesome pumpkin-themed sensory play ideas.  Hopefully you'll find an activity you and your little one can enjoy!

Pumpkin Moon Sand Recipe from Growing a Jeweled Rose- amazing Fall activity for kids
Pumpkin Moon Sand from
Growing a Jeweled Rose
Pumpkin Oobleck from
Inspiration Laboratories

pumpkin pie play dough for fall
Pumpkin Pie Play Dough from Childhood Beckons

Or for an edible play dough:
fall sensory bin {with homemade pumpkin play dough!}
Pumpkin Play Dough from Wildflower Ramblings

How to make pumpkin spice & orange colored sensory rice
Pumpkin Spice Sensory Rice from
Frogs and Snails and Puppy Dog Tails

SILLY Pumpkin Putty- this ooey gooey slime is perfect for Fall & smells just like pumpkin pie. Kids can make fun pretend pumpkin treats as they stretch, pull, squish, & giggle!
Silly Pumpkin Putty Slime from Growing a Jeweled Rose
Pumpkin GOOP for amazing Fall sensory play. Kids love this oozing cross between a liquid and a solid, and you only need a few common ingredients to make it. Smells just like pumpkin pie, too!
Pumpkin Goop from Growing a Jeweled Rose
Pumpkin Spice Clean Mud- Fall Sensory Table
Pumpkin Spice Clean Mud from
Frogs and Snails and Puppy Dog Tails

Don't those look like so much fun!  I can't wait to try out a few more.

Thanks for visiting and God Bless!
- Jessica

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