Using play dough (or in fact any type of dough!) with young children is beneficial in so many ways. The malleable properties of play dough make it fun for investigation and exploration as well as building up strength in the tiny hand muscles and tendons, making them ready for pencil and scissor control later on.
As part of simple, tactile play – it can be squashed, squeezed, rolled, flattened, chopped, cut, scored, raked, punctured, poked and shredded! It can also be used as an alternative to writing! For our week of the whale, we used play dough to form the letter W.
Because young learners often confuse this with the letter M, it was essential for us to tackle it. Using the play dough gives them not only a sensory input of the letter (the fact that it creates two “mountains” as opposed to two “holes”) but a visual one. Using play dough and toy whales they created their Ws, concluding the activity with some open-ended play!