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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
Was painting today with both dds. DD2 (3.5) really prefers to paint her hands (and sometimes puts them on the paper). This got me thinking, she'd probably be better off just mushing around in something than painting. I was thinking of shaving cream with a little coloring in it (on the kitchen table)

Anyone else have any good ideas??? I'm pretty mess-adverse but I'm working on it.
 

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2 easy clean up ones I can think of are:

Shaving cream (no coloring) on a table. Cleans the table and wipes up fast and easy after all the foam has been mooshed around. Clothes do not get hurt by it-they just smell nice. Or do it right before a bath/shower and stripe your child down first. DD loved this but the shaving cream ended up on her most times too.

Ooblick (corn starch and water). Put a box of corn starch on a jelly roll pan (or some other big flat surface with low sides). Slowly add water and let your child mix it together. The consistency should be liquid when on the table but get hard when you pick it up and squeeze it. I think it works out to about equal parts water and starch. This seems like a messy thing but when the water evaporates, which happens very quickly for a spill, you just vacuum/wipe up the corn starch. Water will easily rinse off hands and toys that get in the stuff. It also brushes off clothes easily when dry.

I regularly did both of these things with a preschool class. I never had a complaint from a parent about a child getting to messy. I never had a hard time cleaning up quickly and easily either.
 

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If latex and balloons aren't a concern then instead of water balloons make paint balloons. If you do this when you are in your bathing suits you can hose off after. I use an old plastic table cloth and newsaper for paper, and tape it to the garage or fence and let the kid have a ball. You can also do plunger painting or fly swatter painting.

I love playing in gooey stuff.
 

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Discussion Starter · #5 ·
Beanma - OMG, if I lived anywhere NEAR Rochester, I would pull my girls out of school (although if I lived in the US, they wouldn't be in school, but I digress) and enroll them full-time there!

This is what I needed not just for ideas, but connecting concept to activity, and getting Zen with the "mess" thank you, you may have changed my life.

Now, I'm off to buy some cornstarch and shaving cream!
 

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WE have a part of our garden that is just soil, and the girls love to add water to it and make a mud pit! My oldest covers herself in the mud and chases us all around the garden!
When her friends come over they love tyo play in our backyard mud pit too!
 

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great, glad to have helped. i'm pretty sure i found that link through MDC anyway. just passing along the love...
:
 

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Our DS1 (3.5) loves messy too.

Remember that food coloring itself stains..I learned that over the winter playing with snow and coloring indoors at one point!

Get "end rolls" from your local newspaper and expand finger-painting into toe-painting! (We do this outside or on our deck)

We use shaving cream at bath time;helpful in getting clean kids & a clean tub!
Silly putty
Floam
Cornstarch is a great thing, mixed with glue!!!
Make jello / pudding and eat it outdoors
Make cookies or bread from scratch together (kneading/rolling is great fun!)
A bucket of noodles or uncooked legumes with hidden 'treasures' is a hit

And for the paintings -I have my boys do their wild finger-painting on canvas so I can spray it, frame it and have beautiful art all over our home....just encourage certain colors if you have a preference for decor in a specific room!


HTH.
 

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the colgate shaving cream is non toxic-thats what we used when i worked at the center... food coloring does stain though, we had "green day" one day, and all the babies played with green shaving cream, and we had green tinted babies for a week, lol

you can make a gak type stuff with equal parts white glue and liquid starch. add some coloring if you want. it works best to mix the ingrediants in a ziplock bag, and its fun to sqoosh all the color into it, but once its mixed you can take it out and play
 

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today, my 3.5 yr old ds made a big mud puddle in our backyard with mud and the hose. Once we went out for a picnic and ds found a big ooey gooey mud puddle and just rolled around in it like a baby pig, got totally covered with mud and had a blast. We have a plastic play pool in the back yard that we always set up with some water if he's going to get really messy in the yard. We usually stick with mud, bubbles in the pool, and finger painting with a big piece of cardboard and big squirts of poster paint just laid on the ground outside. DS gets naked and totally paints himself. I've also heard jello can be fun...
 
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