Monday, April 16, 2012

Toddler Sensory Activity: Play Foam (or Floam)

Have you heard of Zulily? It offers random items on clearance. Mostly clothes, shoes, etc. But sometimes it has toys, art supplies and books too! I had been contemplating ordering some play foam from Discount School Supply (DSS) because I thought it would be a good sensory experience for our toddler. But I wasn't sure how it was going to go over. Zulily had a whole pack of small pods on clearance and it was cheaper than the DSS foam so I jumped on it.
I wasn't quite sure what to expect. It wasn't as gooey as I thought it would be, which I think is sort of a good thing. Really you can just squish it around. I suppose you could build sculptures with it. But at age 2, I'm not sure my son is ready for that. Here's what we did do with it:
We used cookie cutters with it.
But I realized, we had to use large size cookie cutters. I wasn't thinking and tried to do our smaller letter cutters. I tried these before the larger cookie cutters. I thought it would sort of pop out of the cutter. Not so much. I had to use a toothpick to get it out of the "S".
The play foam definitely came out of the animal cookie cutters, much easier.
I rolled the foam into balls and he stacked them and squished them into plastic containers. But his favorite thing was when I gave him a metal pizza cutter to play with. He liked slicing through the flattened foam (no worries, our pizza cutter is as dull as can be!).
Overall, he enjoyed mixing the colors up. He enjoyed squishing it and cutting the foam. We probably played with this for about 25 minutes. I wish I could think of some other things to "do" with it. I would love to hear any ideas anyone might have. I'm not sure this is a 'must have' item for everyone's household, but it was fun to try out a new activity!

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