Apple Play Dough Invitation to Play

During our recent apple theme we made a new batch of apple play dough. Then I set up this simple apple-inspired invitation to play.

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Apple Play Dough Invitation to Play

We started with the basic No-Cook Play Dough Recipe in The Homemade Play Dough Recipe Book. Then we added red food coloring and a bit of apple scented shampoo to add a little hint of apple to our dough.

For the invitation to play Lovey and I collected some leaves and small twigs outside. Then we set them up in a tray along with pretend worms and red beans to represent seeds. You could also use real apple seeds, but we didn’t collect quite enough and I thought they might be too small for the toddlers to handle well.

Toddler Play Dough Activities

At first the kids made things like apple pie, apple bread, wormy apples. etc.

Play Dough Creations

Later they decided the worms needed a home other than an apple, so they built this “castle” complete with a two-car garage and new wheels to drive.  Isn’t play dough an awesome way to promote creativity? I just love to see which direction their play takes them.

Often the kids will ask that I read aloud to them while they play with play dough. Below are some of the books we enjoyed reading about apples.

Printable Apple Theme Lesson Plans

Are you teaching an apple-inspired theme soon?

Check out our apple theme lesson plans. We have a general apples theme and a book-based Ten Apples Up on Top theme. Both are full of hands-on learning activities that include reading, math, science, fine motor activities, sensory play, and more.

Apples Home Preschool Activities        Ten Apples Up on Top activities-home preschool lesson plans

These sets are designed for home preschool, but we’re thinking of you too classroom teachers. We’ll have classroom versions available for your use soon!

The Homemade Play Dough Recipe Book

Have your own little play dough lovers at home or in the classroom?  The Homemade Play Dough Recipe Book written by Cathy James of NurtureStore is full of great play dough ideas and inspiration. It has quickly become a handy reference guide for me regarding all things play dough. The book contains:

  • all the recipes you need for the activities in the book including non-cook and cooked play dough, gluten-free dough, salt dough, modelling dough, and real bread.
  • ideas for 52 weeks of loose parts play, in a printable poster format
  • a whole year of play dough activities, arranged seasonally. There’s an idea for every week of the year including sensory and imaginary play, storytelling, art ideas, small worlds, math activities, reading and writing ideas.

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Apple Play Dough Play for Kids


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  1. Melanie says:

    Just found your page, adorable ideas? where do you get the little divided trays for your play dough experiences?

    • So glad you like the ideas we share here! We bought our divided trays at Walmart. They are usually in the seasonal tableware section. Dollar Tree also has similar trays.

  2. My daughter loves play dough!

    Thanks for sharing at Apples, Apples, and more Apples!


  3. Love this playful idea! Thanks for linking up and sharing your creativity at TGIF! I featured this today. I hope to see you linked up again later today,

    Have a great weekend,

  4. The pretend worms are awesome. Love it. I’ll be featuring this on The Sunday Showcase this weekend. Thanks for linking up!

    • Aren’t they fun, Allison? That was definitely the kids favorite part of this invitation. Thanks so much for featuring this post.

  5. This is so awesome! The tray itself is super inviting. I want to play with it!

  6. Oh my goodness this is too cute! And looks like a blast! I can’t wait to do this with my girls! Sharing and pinning!
    Thanks so much for sharing your fabulous ideas as always! 🙂

  7. Lovely!

  8. I love this play dough tray! Your ideas for sensory play are great. Thanks for sharing.


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