The Gruffalo by Julia Donaldson is one of my favorite children books. It is one of those books that my kids ask to read again and again, one of those books that fills the room with laughter every time. This simple invitation to create Gruffalo Play Dough is a fantastic way to spend time together while exploring this classic story!
But who is this creature with terrible claws,
and terrible teeth in his terrible jaws?
He has knobbly knees and turned-out toes,
and a poisonous wart at the end of his nose.
His eyes are orange, his tongue is black; he has purple prickles all over his back.
-The Gruffalo by. Julia Donaldson
Playing with play dough is one of my kids favorite afternoon activities. It is super simple to throw together, clean up, and has a ton of developmental benefits! For this activity we made two batches of play dough together using our favorite easy play dough recipe. While the play dough cooled down we curled up and read!
Items Needed for Gruffalo Play Dough
- Purple and Brown Play Dough
- Pouch Caps
- Kids Crafting Tray (buy here)
- The Gruffalo Book (buy here)
We didn’t dye our pasta because I was short on time, but if you would like to dye your pasta for play we love this simple tutorial for dying pasta.
Both of my kids did not hesitate to jump right in to play. Within minutes we were creating his terrible tusks, and terrible claws…his turned out toes, and the poisonous wart at the end of his nose. Listening to them re-tell parts of the story while also creating their own versions of the Gruffalo was absolutely hilarious. At one point on of the Gruffalos was even described suspiciously close to Daddy.
The kids had a blast (and built up some of their fine motor skills) pushing in pasta and pinching off purple spikes. We also had an in depth conversation about our lack of orange pouch caps, but the kids worked together to decide on using red as it was the closest color we had to orange. So, if you don’t have the perfect materials, don’t worry. Provide a variety of options and let your kids use their creativity and knowledge to solve the problem 😉
Invitations to create such as this are a wonderful tactile experience that will help children explore concepts and retain information for longer.