Here’s a great Chinese New Year play dough activity using the colours and smells associated with the festival.
Chinese New Year play dough activity
This Chinese New Year play dough is easy to make, quick to set up, and gives your children a great hands-on sensory play activity.
This article is part of our Chinese New Year activities for children.
In this activity you can:
:: use our recipe for easy homemade play dough
:: find ideas for a sensory play activity with a Chinese New Year theme
:: find links to more Chinese New Year activities and crafts to enjoy with your children
Ready-made Chinese New Year lesson plans, all in one place
This Unit includes lessons on Chinese New Year and how it is celebrated; the animals of the Chinese zodiac; Chinese dragons and how to make your own dragon puppet; how to make Chinese-style paper lanterns; math and literacy activities including playing lucky 8s, counting to ten in Chinese and play red envelope games; explore sensory painting and taking a mandarin sensory taste test.
In this Chinese New Year Unit you’ll also receive bonus printables including a Red Envelope mat for math activities and three-part colour-in Chinese Zodiac Animals matching cards.
If you are not yet a member of NurtureStore’s Play Academy, join us here to get this and over 50 more ready-made teaching units.
Chinese New Year play dough recipe
Use our favourite no cook play dough recipe. This is easy to make and stores well.
To make this a Chinese New Year play dough, add red food colouring and some Chinese spices for scent: star anise, cinnamon and cloves. It smells wonderful!
Chinese New Year themed sensory play activity with loose parts
Set out the play dough with a selection of loose parts.
Loose parts are simply moveable materials that children can use in their play. They might be bought materials, upcycled from the recycling bin or found natural objects.
To create a Chinese New Year theme, you could use:
:: toy gold coins – often found with pirate-themed party suppies
:: whole Chinese spices such as star anise, cinnamon sticks, cloves
:: Chinese bowls, tea cups and spoons
:: chopsticks or small bamboo canes for mark making
:: other gold and red coloured items from your craft shelves such as lollipop sticks, cake cases and pipe cleaners
Then invite your children to play, however their imaginations want to. Handling and playing with these items lets your children become more familiar with the sights, smells and vocabulary associated with the Chinese New Year festival. Playing with dough is also excellent for fine motor skills development.
More Chinese New Year activities for children
See our full index of Chinese New Year activities for more ideas including how to make Chinese Lanterns, math and literacy activities using red envelopes, and sensory play activities for Chinese New Year.