My favorite Need-Something-Fun-in-a-Pinch-Activity isn’t play dough, or finger paints, or bubbles… it’s shaving cream. I used it in my classroom when I hadn’t planned a lesson (we called it handwriting practice) and I use it with my own kids when I just need them distracted for a spell.
There’s no process or technique, just grab whatever you have and run with it. I prefer the plain old-school white foam (Barbasol to be exact), but the blue gel is fine too.
Any surface works although outside and bath time are certainly the easiest options. (Shaving cream is super easy to clean up and when it dries it’s basically dust, so even inside this is a great activity!)
I raided Mark’s medicine cabinet last week when I needed a minute to get prepared for our color bags. (Read about those here.)
Eleanor loves this activity and Oliver takes a little while to get used to foamy fingers (but he comes around). I gave them each a grapefruit sized dollop of foam and let them have at it. We had some plastic washable cars lying around, so I suggested they might like to drive the trucks through the foam to see the patterns of the wheels. I had Oliver at “tr—“.
And that’s about it. 15 minutes later, the table was covered, the kids were covered and they were still happily playing. Again, I tell you… 15 minutes in toddler time is like high school Physics… and eternity.
So go fire up your Gillette Edge and let ’em have at it. (I take no responsibility for the stubble that may occur as a result of this post.)