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Summer Fun: Ocean Foam Sensory Play

When there's beautiful weather and that summer feeling in the air, there's nothing better than taking sensory play outside. We've got this great foam sensory play activity to take ocean themed water play to the next level.

Photographer: Matt Brockie | Source: Unsplash

What you will need:

  • 1/4 cup of warm water
  • 2 tablespoons of washing up liquid
  • 2 tablespoons of cornflour
  • blue food colouring (you can restock here)
  • an electric blender or whisk
  • a tough spot or other container, with small world ocean animals

Preparing the activity

Put all the ingredients above into the blender or a large mixing bowl. Blitz it all together on high speed until it turns into a firm foam. Add this to your container full of ocean creatures, and you're ready for the children to get stuck in!


Doing the activity:

This is very much a child-led activity, so there's little you need to do in terms of process. Some ideas you might like to use to get started include;

8-20 months

Let a small group of children sit in, or next to the container full of foam. Encourage them to explore the feeling of the foam, and allow them to play freely with the activity.

Soap bubbles_2
Photographer: Daniele Levis Pelusi | Source: Unsplash

22-36 months

Working with just 1 or 2 children, this activity can be extended in various ways. Focussing on number work, you could use buckets and different containers to encourage the children to use the language of quantities. "This bucket has more foam in it than this pot", for example.

Alternatively this activity could be used to explore various elements of the children's physical development such as fine-motor control in using tools, balancing or a different type of drawing.

Tracking the activity

8 - 20 months

Physical Development, Moving & Handling; "Enjoys the sensory experience of making marks in damp sand, paste or paint"

Expressive Art & Design, Exploring & Using Media and Materials; "Notices and is interested in the effects of making movements which leave marks"

22 - 36 months

Mathematics, Numbers; "Uses some language of quantities, such as ‘more’ and ‘a lot"

Physical Development, Moving & Handling; "Shows control in holding and using jugs to pour, hammers, books and mark-making tools"

Physical Development, Moving & Handling; "Squats with steadiness to rest or play with object on the ground, and rises to feet without using hands"

Physical Development, Moving & Handling; "Imitates drawing simple shapes such as circles and lines"