This beach playdough activity is so simple, but it’s packed with learning. Whether you are a parent at home looking for an activity to help fill long summer days or a teacher at daycare hoping to find a playdough center idea, this is what you need. Combining real shells with toy crabs and beads, your student or child will have all they need to explore a little science, fine motor development, storytelling, and best of all, get creative while doing it. Here is how I put together this simple beach playdough activity.
Playdough Activity for Preschool & Daycare
Gather your materials. You will need some playdough ( I use actual play-doh use my affiliate link to grab your own), some shells, plastic crabs, some beads, and glass accent beads. I am using a tray to show you this from home, but I use the table at school.
You don’t need to prompt your child or students, but feel free to sit next to them and explore if they are slow to get into it. You can try all sorts of things like:
Making shell fossils
Creating your own beach. Don’t forget to tell a story about your beach, who lives there? Where is this beach?
Building shell towers!
Most of all, have fun. While exploring, your students will be working hard on fine motor skills. I love adding beads to really kick that up a notch. They will be exploring shells, how they look, feel, smell… maybe tastes ( discourage that one), and I find my favorite thing about playdough play is how naturally it lends itself to storytelling. “Misha, can you tell me about your beach? Who lives there? You made a snail. Wow, does it have a name?” Sometimes a few simple questions are all you need to get the story going.
Oh, and please don’t police color mixing. It’s the best part of using playdough. If you don’t want them to mix the colors, don’t offer more than one.
More Beach Activities for Preschool & Daycare
Have fun with all kinds of beach activities with this list of great beach activities for preschoolers!