Wait! I know what you are thinking…first she said to make playdough, and then there was the sand activities, and now she wants us to play with shaving cream! Really, though, there’s a reason. As early learners, children need more tactile activities to help them learn, keep play interesting, and continue their developmental growth. Where’s the data that suggests that? I’m not sure. I’m sure if I did a little research I could find you some numbers that prove this, but really, it comes from my experiences working with children.
So today for Homemade Monday, our topic is shaving cream! For starters, it’s very inexpensive. One can runs just over $1. You’ll want to get the shaving cream without any special fragrance or lotion. You’ll also probably want a paint shirt or smock to cover up their nicer clothes.
One of the easiest ways to use shaving cream for literacy is to just squeeze it on a table or in a large container and let your child have fun with it. Let them squeeze it between their fingers. Let them draw pictures in it. Let them explore its texture. And then let them start drawing letters and words. For older children, you could let them practice spelling words and study questions by drawing the answers in the shaving cream.
One of my other new favorite shaving cream activities is shaving cream with cornstarch! The recipe is whatever you want it to be–I did about a cup of cornstarch and probably two cups of shaving cream. It’s the funniest texture–I can’t even describe what it is like. I would have to ask that you just try it and report back to me what you think. Children can roll it in their hands, squish and squeeze it, and form shapes with it.
Remember, all of this squishing and squeezing is good for their little hands. It helps develop their fine motor skills, which leads to a better grip on their pencils and hopefully, an easier time with handwriting.
One warning though: You’ll want to do this activity WITH your child. Shaving cream is not an edible item, so you’ll want to make sure they don’t put it in their mouth. I also wouldn’t do this with a child who is less than three years old.