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Be a Play Dough Detective

Be a Play Dough Detective
Messiness: Low
Age Range: 3y - 7y
Estimated Time: <30 mins

Activity Designer

Nicole Duggan
159 Projects
What left that footprint? Solve the mystery to find out and become a play dough detective.

How We Did It

Be a Play Dough Detective
Gather a few plastic animals or figurines from your toy area and play dough. Have your child help you roll 6 play dough balls and flatten them with your palm.
Be a Play Dough Detective

I picked 3 dinosaurs. When he wasn't looking, I pushed them into the play dough to make footprints. I left the pink play dough without footprints so he could use it to experiment with. I set it all up and called him over and said, "Look dinosaurs were here. They left footprints! Can you figure out which dinosaur left which footprint?" There's nothing like a mystery to get a child's attention! He used the dinosaurs to make his own sets of footprints and then matched them up to solve the mystery.

Be a Play Dough Detective
Right away he wanted to do it again, but he wanted me to make it harder for him by having 4 insects to choose from and only 3 sets of prints.
Be a Play Dough Detective
The insects were more of a challenge and it was so neat to see the prints in the play dough.
Be a Play Dough Detective
We did this activity over and over again. He even made a mystery for me to solve and one for his sister too. It was a fun, new way to play with play dough!


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We loved this project.

posted by: Kerry on 9.4.2013

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