As we were doing some of our marshmallow theme activities, I noticed the toddlers in our group really wanted to get involved. I wanted to come up with a way for them to participate…that didn’t include eating tons of marshmallows, which was clearly their first preference. Since the big kids had so much fun getting the marshmallows wet, I wondered what would happen if we added a bunch of marshmallows to water and created some marshmallow sensory play.
Marshmallow Sensory Bin Water Play
How to set up the marshmallow sensory bin
I really wasn’t sure how the activity was going to turn out so we did this one outside. We have a water table (similar but the one we use is discontinued for now) that has two sections. Two bins would have also worked well.
We filled one side with cold water and one side with warm water. Then the kids added a bunch of marshmallows. My youngest daughter chose to add her marshmallows one by one…bless her! We used different sizes and colors.
I could tell from the initial squeals of delight that this would be hit!
The kids spent a solid hour playing in the water, and they probably would have played longer if we didn’t have to clean up for the day.
Each of them enjoyed interacting with the marshmallows in different ways. Tinker loved transferring them back and forth between the warm water and the cold water.
The big kids swirled them in the water, dropped them to see the splash, and squeezed them to watch them change shape.
I just smiled at the spontaneous shouts of, “This is so cool.”
Even Little Buddy got to join in the fun!
What about the clean up?
I was a little surprised at how easy this was to clean up. The kids weren’t sticky at all. They dried off with a towel and went on their way.
This is definitely one of my favorite messy play activities yet, and I know we’ll have to do it again some time!
Would you give this one a try?
What is the larger orange-looking chunks? are they a different kind of marshmallow. It looks like hot dogs that were cut up.
They are a different kind of marshmallow. We were learning the letter M shortly after Halloween, and we just grabbed all the marshmallows we had in our pantry. We had some left over orange pumpkin marshmallows…but now they look like hot dogs to me too 🙂
I was looking for new ideas for the sensory table for our Toddler Class but although this looks like Super! fun I can’t do this in the public school district early childhood where I am. We not supposed to use food anymore (like dried rice, beans, noodles, corn meal etc) out of consideration for our low income and immigrant families who are astonished that we would “waste” food for a play activity. We are still using water, shredded paper, sand, & snow with toys thrown in. Any other ideas would be helpful.
I can understand the reasoning for that decision, although very few marshmallows went uneaten in this activity. 😉 We also do a lot with natural materials. You might consider using small pebbles collected around the school yard, shells, leaves, or flower petals. If you have any budget for non-consumable sensory materials, the kids also enjoy using small glass beads and pom poms as a base. Pony beads could also be fun to use as a base. Hmm, now you’ve got me thinking of all sorts of ideas. I hope these few suggestions are helpful.
Seems like a great sensory activity! I may have to try it when the weather warms up! Thanks for linking to Mom’s Library!
It is definitely worth a try! I am pretty sure we will be doing it again, too.
Oh I bet that was quite gooey feeling! My kids would LOVE it I’m sure!
It was a very neat sensation!
How did you manage to stop your children from eating them?! After an hour of play there would have been no marshmallows left if it had been my children! No self control!!
This was day three of our marshmallow series, so the kids had eaten a few marshmallows along the way so far. They did eat a couple from the sensory bin, but I think it was more out of curiosity than anything else. Really they were so engaged in the sensory play that it wasn’t an issue. You could also have them save a small cup full of dry marshmallows to have as a snack after playtime.
Cerys @ Rainy Day Mum
I would seriously have thought that this would have been sticky – an eye opener that it wasn’t. It looks a lot of fun to try and would be great for some sensory edible fun for my put everything in her mouth tot
Thank you for linking up to Tuesday Tots this week.
I was sure it would be sticky, too! I planned for a major clean-up. What a surprise! Hope you get a chance to try it out. 🙂
Deb @ Living Montessori Now
What a fun sensory experience! I would have thought it would be a sticky activity … interesting to find out that it isn’t. I featured your post at the Living Montessori Now Facebook page: http://www.facebook.com/LivingMontessoriNow
Thanks, Deb! I thought it was going to be sticky and messy, too. I was definitely surprised. Thanks so much for sharing on Facebook.
Cannot wait for warm weather so we can head outdoors to give this a try!
If you have a large plastic bin you could probably put it in the tub and give it a try. When we can’t get outside I put the sensory bin in the tub, and it makes for easy clean up. 🙂
Wow, I love this day! My son is allergic to gluten, so he can’t do a lot of the sensory activities that are out there — but I love that he could do this one! I think he’d be eating them the whole time though 🙂 Thanks for sharing!
Oh, I am so glad he will get to do this! I hope it is a lot of fun for him. And honestly my girls tried a few marshmallows…just make sure the bin, water, and hands are clean when you start and it really doesn’t matter if he eats them 🙂
This is a great idea! I never would have thought of it because I kind of have some texture issues myself so it’s people like you who inspire me to set things up for my son that never would have occurred to me otherwise.
I’ll pin and try with him eventually!
Oh, do try it! For as much fun as it is, it is not super messy. It should be easy to clean up. I hope your son enjoys the experience!
Ann @ My Nearest and Dearest
I want to get my hands in there too! What a neat idea.
I have to say I did try it out myself!