Tuesday, October 22, 2013

Play Learning Tuesday: No-Bake Puffy Paint Wooden Chinese characters

We've been neglecting Chinese for a while now, though the reading of Chinese story books continues daily, along with the use of 我会读 Level 1 and 二三快读 series. Just the other day, I saw EV follow the handwriting instructions in a Sage Montesorri book (which we got from Popular) and 'write' characters, I felt it was time to bring the focus back to Chinese.

I've been wanting to try out puffy paints, so I thought: why not do it with Chinese characters? It will help us go through the characters she already knows, and lets her practice her writing in a sensory way. Perfect!

So we made some No-Bake Puffy Paint Wooden Chinese Characters.

Puffy paint cover

To make these, you will need:
Small square wooden pieces (I got them from Daiso; these are rather small and works better with characters with fewer strokes)
DIY puffy paint (instructions below)
Squeeze bottles for putting the paint in

Puffy paint 1

How to make no-bake puffy paint
1 cup flour
1 cup salt
3/4 cup water
Food colouring

1. Mix the flour, salt and water together until you get the desired consistency, neither too watery nor thick. If it's too watery, the paint will dry flat. If it's too thick, it will be difficult to squeeze out of the bottle.
2. Separate the mixture into the desired number of portions, depending on how many colours you are making. We made four colours - pink, blue, purple and orange.
3. Put the mixture into the squeeze bottles.
Then it was just a matter of squeezing the puffy paint out, writing the Chinese characters on to the wooden blocks and leaving it overnight to dry.

Puffy paint 3

We had heaps of puffy paint, so I gave EV some paper and she made some shapes with the puffy paint. For this batch, I made it a bit too thick, and after a while, it refused to be squeezed out of the bottle. Adding a full cup of water would have been better.

But no matter. EV removed the cover, squeezed out the paint in a big dollop, and started painting with a straw. The consistency of the paint meant that it dried quite fast. While she painted, she could feel the texture of her earlier work. She was amazed with how the paint puffed up and how it felt soft yet not wet while it dried. So while it was a tad thick, it was great for the senses. Love the colours too.

Puffy paint 4

Puffy paint 2

AA had a go at it too, with a wooden stick and plastic spoon. This let him practice his motor skills and he made lines and tried to scoop up the paint. Later, EV joined in and the both of them had an awesome time mixing the puffy paint into an unrecognisable mixture. Mummy had a great time cleaning after them too. Rather messy it was, but just hearing their infectious laugh was enough to make me smile. As long as they are having fun, any mess is good mess.

Puffy paint 5

What messy fun are you having today?


What is Play Learning Tuesday?

Play Learning Tuesday is a bi-weekly linky hosted by Toddly Mummy where bloggers are invited to share their child-friendly play, learning and craft activities. Taking part for the first time? You might like to read the guidelines here first.

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Tot School No Time For Flash Cards Activities for Children Lessons Learnt Journal Kids Co-Op Tuesday Tots Mama to 5 Blessings Photobucket Teach Beside Me


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  1. Thanks for this great tip. I'm sure my baby will love playing with it.
    Plus we'll have fun preparing it too!

    1. Glad you like it. Hope you have a great time making it. Thanks for popping by! :)


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