Christmas,  Play at home

Christmas Time: Peppermint Rice Christmas Sensory Play

Sensory rice play is great for young kids of all ages, as they all explore it differently. This twist on a traditional sensory rice kit includes peppermint scented rice, some Christmas decorations to play with and homemade scoops to keep things simple.

To colour and scent your rice, all you need is a plastic zip lock bag and some poster paint. Pour your rice in the bag and add a few squirts of paint. Shake the rice around in the bag until it is coloured, adding more paint if needed. Once coloured, you can add your scent to the rice – I added a few drops of Peppermint essence and shook it around. Lay the coloured rice out on a baking tray and either lay in the sun or pop in the oven on very low heat for 10 minutes and leave to dry.

I didn’t have any small scoops to play with, but it’s so easy to make your own! Save up any paddlepop sticks and bottle tops and use your hot glue gun to stick them down. There you have it, some simple scoops! I kept lids of differing sizes and had some jumbo paddlepop sticks in my craft box to use which gave me different sizes.

Setting up a sensory rice kit shouldn’t take long – it only takes 2 seconds for your immaculate display to be crushed by little hands so don’t worry about making it perfect! Pour in your rice (I had 2 colours so did half and half) and throw in a few decorations – little Christmas trees, bells, tree ornaments, patty pans, anything you have lying around can go in. Add your scoops and let them play. My child loved scooping and filling a bowl, and then emptying it out again. It helps them practice their hand-eye coordination and balance!

BONUS: I had made up a matching game using some cardboard cut offs and glued on some Christmas pictures. I threw these matching discs into the sensory rice and he had to find them and match them with the pictures on a piece of paper. This game can be used with or without sensory play!