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15+ Creative Playdough Ideas for Kids (with Video)

by Jean Van't Hul
January 26, 2016

Looking for creative playdough ideas for kids? Here are more than 15 (with a video showing the ideas in action), including making fantastical creatures, using poke-ins, trying playdough mats, forming letters, and pretend play.

More Than 15 Creative Playdough Ideas for Kids

Playdough is a big-time standby for us and has been since Maia was a toddler.

A big batch of homemade playdough will see us through months of making and modeling, pretend play, and pretend cooking.

Part creative, part therapeutic, playdough can be used for so much!

Here’s a video showing kids playdough ideas in action. Below, I’ll list of different ideas and techniques and then share some of my kids recent playdough play.

Playdough Ideas and Techniques 

  • Playdough can be shaped and molded.
  • Rolled and cut.
  • Stamped and pressed.
  • And it accepts all kinds of poke-ins and embellishments.
15 Creative Playdough Ideas for Kids

15+ Creative Playdough Ideas for Kids

  1. Make awesome 3-D faces with playdough (on pumpkins, squash, or an upside-down bowl)
  2. Shape letters and write words
  3. Make playdough Earth balls
  4. Create a diorama of an ecosystem with playdough
  5. Or build a working volcano
  6. Pretend cooking and cupcake decorating with playdough
  7. A list of favorite playdough poke-ins
  8. Playdough construction and sculptures
  9. Small world playdough play for kids
  10. Playdough as birthday or holiday gifts (add 2-3 colors of homemade playdough to a mason jar and make a label for the top)
  11. Exploring textures in playdough (by Babble Dabble Do on The Imagination Tree)
  12. Nature prints
  13. Plaster casting with playdough and figurines or nature items
  14. Playdough snowmen (in mason jar snow globes)
  15. Use a garlic press for hair and fun-textures
  16. A color mixing lesson with playdough (on The Handmade Home)
  17. Playdough mats (awesome free printables on Picklebums)

Playdough Creations in Our House

Homemade playdough for kids

We’ve had a lot of snow days lately.

During one of them, I set out balls of playdough on the art table while Daphne and her kindergarten classmate, Rose, were catching snowflakes on their tongue and attempting to form snowballs with the limited amount of snow they could scrape up (this was before we got lots of snow). The fifth graders, making icing in the kitchen and then working on homework together, were oblivious, but the younger ones were immediately drawn to the colorful dough, making fantastical creatures, monsters, and birds in nests.

Playdough with poke-ins and embellishments

While I hadn’t added any poke-ins or tools to the table on purpose (I like to encourage them to interact with the playdough on it’s own, at least sometimes), Daphne requested toothpicks and helped herself to beads and googly eyes.

Today, I thought I’d share photos of their creations as well as links to some of our favorite ways to use playdough.

Making Playdough Monsters and Creatures

Daphne was especially into making monsters and other fantastic creatures with lots of eyes and appendages. (Sadly, I did not get a photo of the one with all the extra eyes and such.)

Playdough Ideas for Kids - Birds in Nests

Rose made birds in nests…

A Playdough Sun

…and a sun.

The Most Colorful Playdough Snowmen Ever

And they each made the most colorful snowmen ever.

There is so much fun to be had with playdough!

What are your children’s favorite playdough ideas or activities? Any new ones here that you’d like to try?

Pin It for Later

More than 15 creative playdough ideas for kids, including making fantastical creatures, using poke-ins, trying playdough mats, forming letters, and pretend play. #playdough #kidsactivities #sensory #sensoryactivities #play #creativehome #artsandcrafts

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