This post is authored by Anna Reyner, a registered art therapist and licensed marriage and family therapist. Anna is a nationally recognized arts advocate that has conducted over 500 hands-on art workshops for learners of all abilities. Follow Anna’s blog at Art and Creativity in Early Childhood Education.
Special Needs Application:
IncredibleFoam® Dough is a wonderfully tactile product for sensory seekers.
IncredibleFoam® Dough is a light modeling compound (think substitute for clay) that’s wonderful to touch, squish, and sculpt into 3-Dimensional Art. It comes in dozens of colors and it’s an inspiration for creative young minds, like 4 year old Jordan pictured here. Does he look proud of himself or what? Jordan came up with this idea on his own, by pressing several colors of Foam Dough onto an 11" x 17” piece of construction paper, then later gluing down the pieces with white glue so they’d stick.
Foam Dough also makes a great Small Group Activity, as illustrated by this collaborative artwork. A small cluster of school age students created a picture by working together and Foam Dough to start, and they were asked to work cooperatively to decide on a theme and create one unified picture. I loved the result, as well as the teamwork it inspired.
Other 3-D figures and sculptures can be created in simple or more complex fashion, depending on a child’s age and interests. We’ve created them here on paper plates so they’re easier to carry around, and they can later be glued down onto the paper if desired.
Whether you apply Foam Dough to paper, or shape it into a freestanding 3-D sculpture, it looks great and is always easy and fun to work with. And did I mention it doesn’t make a mess? Foam Dough is soft to touch, and makes a great substitute for traditional play dough and clay. Unlike other clays and dough, it’s virtually mess-free and can be re-used again and again. it never dries out, trust me it’s true, you can even leave it out on the counter for a days and days and its consistency will not alter one little bit. Moreover, foam dough is the perfect sensory play material and exercises important cognitive skills as well as eye-hand-brain coordination. Sensory stimulation is so important in early childhood education, and this is one new sensory play product that you’re sure to love.
Foam Dough is also completely open ended so it brings out children’s natural creativity. IncredibleFoam® Dough holds lots of discoveries. It even floats! Imagine making little boats for your sand and water table.
The IncredibleFoam® Dough Classroom Pack is my favorite, since the color cubes are a delight to look at and easy to distribute. But, you can also purchase IncredibleFoam® Dough in a larger Set of 7 Basic Colors or a smaller Sampler Pack. However you try it, you’re guaranteed a lot of active learning and pure sensory delight!