After school drop off on the first morning of limiting TV time, I gave her half a cup of rice to play with in a plastic bowl & some of the toys from the bath.
It was a HIT!!
From there I decided to make coloured rice to play with. Years ago, when I did Child Care at TAFE, I had made some for a music themed task. I couldn't remember how to do it though so I googled. I found this which provided a few different ideas.
We took a little walk to the local supermarket, purchased a cheap 2kg bag of rice & some food colouring & came home to get colouring.
I grabbed a couple of baking trays. Lined them with foil. Grabbed an aluminium mixing bowl, a measuring cup and a spoon then gathered what I needed... Rice, White Vinegar and Food Colouring
This was SUPER easy to do.
I put 1/4 cup of vinegar in the bowl, added the food colouring, then added 1/2 cup of uncooked rice. Now, the amount of food colouring varied but I had been reading that some people used about 8 drops. I'm guessing it may depend on the brand you use but I ended up using 20 - 30 drops depending on the colour we were trying to achieve. Miss Pants chose the colours we used this time.
So we added the rice and gave it a stir for a few minutes. Seriously, it wouldn't have been any longer than about 5 minutes. (Be very careful not to make a mess because it'll be difficult to remove. It probably won't come out of clothing either.)
Carefully drain the water off (or use a fine strainer if you have one) then spread the rice out on the prepared tray to dry. We went with the leave-it-in-the-sun-to-dry option and ducked off to pre school with a book order while we waited for it to dry. When we got back I gave it a bit of a stir and found it almost dry, so we had lunch while we waited and then she was off to play!
I should really just add though that if you are anal about keeping your carpet clean, do NOT let this be an indoor activity. I though, realise that our carpet could not only do with cleaning, but also replacing, so I'm pretty cool with it.
Seriously, this has entertained her for HOURS over the week. Even Mr Magoo & H have enjoyed playing with it. Over the week the bag has reduced slightly in size though. Some of it has been vacuumed up because try as we might it is really hard to pick it all up off the carpet. Her tea set & cooking utensils have been used to play too. We made some little shakers with leftover plastic eggs from Easter as well. Rice really does make some pretty cool sounds.
Now, I need to come up with something else for her to do. Any ideas????
We might make some windmill/pinwheel thingies this week...
Bye for now, K