Friday, 23 November 2012

Small World Snow Play

(Goblin is 37 months)
Today Goblin woke up to a snow storm. Not a real snow storm, a play one I'd laid out before I went to bed last night. I am a total hypocrite. I wrote a post just last weekend on how kids don't need elaborate play, and then I go and do it this. The thing is I haven't done it in a while and I do love walking in to the living room with him when he discovers a play scene waiting for him.
I made snow by grating four bars of cheap white soap. It was so cheap that it was squidgy so I could mould some into snowballs. It also smelled lovely - coconut scented. The great thing about soap snow is when your child has finished playing with it you can either add some water and mash it back into a soap ball for washing, or you can keep it for wet felting.
 I also made some peppermint playdough. I always use Nurturestore's easy recipe which doesn't involve cooking - just boiling water. Where playdough is concerned I go on the theory that if you find something that works you should stick with it. I added peppermint essential oil to make it smell nice (Goblin has a cold so this was good for his sinuses) and I used some glitter for wintery sparkles.
In the Autumn I collected a whole bunch of pine cones. I painted them white in the hope of making some beautiful ornaments to hang on our season tree. Unfortunately, while they looked amazing when first painted, they closed up as they were drying. I had heard that pine cones do this - there is a post about it on Science Sparks - but to be honest I hadn't really thought that paint would make them do it. Anyway my beautiful open pinecones turned into rather boring shrunken ones. So I covered them in glitter and donated them to Goblin's play scene as trees.
 I have conceded that no matter what play ideas I come up with Goblin always defaults to his diggers. So rather than fight this I thought I would accommodate it. So I added his bulldozer and dumper to the snow to create a snow shovelling scene.
Goblin was suitably impressed when he found his little snow storm. He spent a good part of the morning moving the snow from one part of the mat to the other with his many digger and dumper toys. LAter in the day he added gravel to the snow (not a problem as the soap can be separated out by washing). And eventually he took his "forest" apart and rolled the playdough into balls and carted them around in one of his bigger trucks. All in all this was a very successful bit of sensory play as it kept him going on and off through out the whole day.

I'm sharing this with
Tuesday Tots
For the Kids Friday PhotobucketI Can Teach My ChildSerenity you


  1. love it; so simple and fun. pine cones as trees is a great idea too!

  2. I am so inspired! I've been thinking about how to set up a snow plowing small world. This makes me want to start working on it right now!

    And I'm with you on feeling like a hypocrite about preaching simple play and then setting up more elaborate play scenes. I do love small world play though! I think it's all about balance. We can help them learn to be independent and creative thinkers but we can also provide fun opportunities for them to expand their imaginations.

  3. I love this! How special! What lucky kiddos! Wonderful pictures!

  4. Loving that the diggers still get in on the action, pretty certain if I'd done that in our house aliens and dragons would have made a trip through the snow! I've just pinned this.

  5. Amazing! AND I think I can manage to do that. A winning combination for my craft-challenged self.

  6. I absolutely love this. Can I add it to my trucks round up post?? Thanks!

    1. Oh yes please do Jennifer we love your series

  7. That looks like so much fun! I just love the shaved soap idea. I need more items that will stop my children putting things in their mouth. I still catch Miss Poss eating playdough and then the Twinkles are almost two so they are still putting everything in there. Is it bad to giggle at thinking about their faces when they put the grated soap in their mouth?

  8. Wow - so beautiful and how clever are you to come up with making it using soup!! LOVE it!
    Thanks for linking up to TGIF! Have a great week,
    Beth =-)

  9. What a fun idea and how smart to use grated soap! I am featuring this post too in my co-op post. We were planning on painting pine cones this week, but I had no idea that they might close up again. Bummer!

  10. Oh, how fun!! I think I may have to try this one! Thank you for sharing at Sharing Saturday!

  11. I love painted pine cones! How fun.

  12. Fun, fun, fun! Have you tried microwaving Ivory Soap yet? It would also leave a fun snow like texture if you wanted to change things up :)

    Thanks so much for sharing with us. I have featured you on this week's Sunday Showcase :)

  13. What a great activity! My son loved playing with his "snow" this morning. Here are a few pictures from our version--thanks for sharing!

  14. I *love* this idea and just pinned it! The scene you set up looks so inviting.

  15. What a fun idea! I LOVE the pinecone trees! I featured your photo and post in my 25+ Snow-Themed Sensory Tubs at

  16. What a great idea. Where did you get the great mat that he is playing on? I would love to have one...the little one loves rocks.


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