Kids go wild for construction toys. I’m talking diggers and lorries galore. Adding cloud dough (also known as moon dough) takes it to a new level. The dough transforms ordinary play into a construction sensory bin wonderland.
But what is it? I’ll explain its benefits and how to make cloud dough. Quick preview- you can whip some up with flour from your cupboards. It’s that simple! Let’s jump in.
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What Is Cloud Dough?
You can make it with flour and oil, and it’s a form of sensory play. Sensory play engages children using touch, sound, smell, taste, and sight. It’s called cloud dough (or moon dough) because it has a light, soft texture.
It’s incredible for developing language because it introduces children to new senses that spark their curiosity. The dough is easy to make, fuss-free, and extremely versatile.
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What Is A Construction Bin?
It’s a sensory bin, tray, or tub with a construction site theme. Add building blocks and toys, like diggers, lorries, and dump trucks, so your child can create a mini-building site.
It’s great for kids to learn about colors, recreate real-life situations, and develop their imagination. Remember, sensory construction bins are for all children!
The Benefits of Using Dough in Sensory Bins
Touching cloud dough is magical!
It has a soft and playable texture that is hard to resist.
Cloud dough is engaging and calming to feel as kids mold it to make shapes and create worlds. Touch stimulates the brain and helps generate new ideas and curiosity.
They can maneuver the construction-themed toys to pick up the dough, make shapes, and do whatever they want! Add spades and other tools to improve fine motor skills and coordination.
There have been numerous studies show how early movement helps children later in life. You’ll want to read more about it here.
Check out these Kinetic Sand Activities for Kids.
But that’s not all!
To read and truly understand Science and Math in the later years, we must allow children to touch and feel during the early years. This opportunity will help make connections with future learning.
How to Make Cloud Dough for Your Construction Bin
You only need a few simple ingredients to start your cloud dough recipe.
- 8 cups of flour – you can use any kind of flour. Plain, self-raising, almond, etc., are all fine. Whatever you have in the house and is the most budget-friendly.
- 1 cup of oil – vegetable oil is a good option because it’s cheap. However, olive oil and sesame oil also work.
- Cocoa powder – a great option to add color to your cloud dough. Cocoa powder has a light, pleasant scent and replicates the look of sand at a construction site.
Mix all the ingredients and adjust the measurements until you get the consistency you desire.
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How to Store Your Cloud Dough
To store your cloud dough, simply place it in an airtight container. You can see that I have a small obsession with the storage containers from Playroom and Storage!
These containers are tightly sealed and keep the dough ready to play with time and time again. My four-year-old played with this cloud dough sensory construction bin all morning and for weeks following.
What You Need For Your Cloud Dough Sensory Construction Bin
- Large Container – get a large tub, bin, or tray and dedicate it to sensory play.
- Old Towel or Sheet – place an old shower curtain, bedsheet, or towel underneath the sensory play (whatever you have lying around). It catches any stray cloud dough, preventing extra mess.
- Add our Cloud Dough – tip your cloud or moon dough into the container and spread it around.
- Set the Scene with Construction Toys – include a variety of building site toys. Cones and diggers are always a hit. You can also add building blocks to give children the freedom to create additional objects.
- Include Different Child-Friendly Tools – measuring cups, spades, and spoons are great to add to the tray, so kids have numerous tools to develop their motor skills and enhance play.
- Let the kids enjoy it! – step back and watch their play unfold.
Is sensory play your jam, but just not sure how to get started? Check out how to introduce sensory play to your kids.
Cloud Dough Makes A Great Addition to Your Construction Sensory Bin
Cloud dough is super easy to make and keeps for a long time. It’s a soft, sandy texture, perfect for adding to a construction-themed sensory tray. Your kids will have a great time and enhance their development skills.
Looking for more sensory play and not sure where to find it? Check out these ideas for sensory play.