PreK-3rd Grade


Family Engagement Activity Coming in February For All 3rd Graders...

Each 3rd Grade Family will receive playdough with the information below (Store bough play dough Homemade Playdough Ingredients List, Ten Reasons for Play Dough and Props Promote Play List) in a bag. Thank you to all the P-3 Committee for making this happen! 2nd Grade, 1st Grade, K, Pre-K...your turn is coming soon!

Did You Know…that WCSD has a Purposeful Play Initiative?

Play is NOT just for Pre-K…every child and adult should play on a daily basis!

Do you want to know more about what purposeful play is?

Please visit here…


Ten Reasons for Play Dough

By Heather F. White

January 2023

  1. Social Skills- Children talk, collaborate, plan together, share materials, and problem solve in a social setting.

  2. Fine Motor- When a child molds, rolls, flattens, and shapes play dough it strengthens the small muscles in their hands needed for writing, and using small tools.

  3. Literacy- Add paper, small cards, crayons, markers to the play dough time and children will write, make signs, and label their creations.

  4. Numeracy- Play dough helps children use concrete forms for difficult math concepts- more/less, shapes, how many, what is left, and math problem stories. Higher-level math concepts including geometry, spatial sense, and sorting.

  5. Language- The simple act of using play dough builds vocabulary, descriptive words, listening, and speaking skills. Inventing a story about a creation or using their mold to refer to their everyday experiences.

  6. Creativity & Imagination- The simple act of creating from “scratch” pushes the use of imagination and creativity. The play is at the child’s level whatever their age as seen in their creations and use of details.

  7. Calm- In this high speed over active time children need a time for calm quiet play and expression. This play releases tension and excess energy, improves focus and helps worries to seem a bit smaller.

  8. Science- This hands-on experience allows children an understanding of how matter changes (physics). The scientific concept of cause & effect when mixing your own play dough or by adding ingredients like sand or sawdust.

  9. Physical Development- The act of playing with and manipulating the play dough builds eye-hand coordination while improving dexterity.

  10. FUN!- It is important to relax with your child for pure fun! Laughter, conversation, and quality time together is priceless!

Homemade Playdough Ingredients:

2 cups all-purpose flour

3/4 cup salt

4 teaspoons cream of tartar

2 cups lukewarm water

2 Tablespoons of vegetable oil (coconut oil works too)

Food coloring

Stir together the flour, salt and cream of tartar in a large pot. Next add the water, oil and food coloring. Cook over medium heat, stirring constantly. Continue stirring until the dough has thickened and begins to form into a ball. Remove from heat and then place inside a gallon sized bag or onto wax paper. Allow to cool slightly and then knead until smooth.

Props Promote Play

Simple props from around the home can promote deeper play that is more imaginative. They can help your child’s imagination to soar while building their attention span.

Simple List of Prop Ideas:

  • Birthday candles – cookie cutters

  • Blocks

  • Stones & small sticks

  • Buttons

  • Screws, nuts, and bolts make fun imprints

  • Toothpicks

  • Feathers, leaves

  • Plastic knives

  • A small scissor

  • Rolling pin

  • Bottles

  • Straws of various lengths and colors

  • String or shoelace

  • Small toy people, animals, and trees

  • Paper, small cardboard, markers or pens to make signs

  • Tea strainer or garlic press (they will need a bit of time to clean!)

  • Dry noodles, sand

Resources- Playdough Power/NAEYC article, 7 Benefits of Playing with Play Dough, Sunshine House Early Learning Academy, M.L. Henniger-Pearson A.B. prentice Hall May 2014