Water Table Play Station
I only learned what a water table was by watching the Defranco Family Vlogs and saw Linz play with her son, Trey (similar age as Gregory if I recall) and I was like “I NEED THAT FOR BEAN!”
You see, my Bean is a water boy. No, not that waterboy, he’s a water boy. He loves being in the water. We were in baby swim lessons the day after 6 months old, the minimum age to take a class at the pool. When it rains, we go puddle jumping, when it’s sunny, well, we needed an outdoor toy and the water table seemed like the perfect solution.
One Mans Trash is Another (Wo)mans Treasure
I am usually on Craigslist early in the morning a few times a week. It’s how I pass time and slowly wake my brain up before anyone else is awake in the house. It really helps because I can get extremely excited over a find and that helps me wake up and start my day off with an adventure game plan.
I’m a craigslist free-bie looker. I generally stick to the posts that are free. It adds to the adrenaline rush when we manage to pick up the latest find before anyone else. Score! I found our water table, along with some excellent Tonka trucks for free on the side of the road one morning. Gregory and I were picking up our goods by 7:30 am.
It didn’t cost me anything, it gave me some fun, and it was an excellent morning adventure with Gregory who came home and hasn’t stopped playing with his new toys outside. When I look at these toys, I am glad I managed to not spend money on them. But they have an extra story behind how we acquired them, they are special.
Water Play Table Activity
Filling the table with water is only one of the many ways this plastic contraption can be used. I just know it. I haven’t yet discovered them all, but with summer just about to arrive, I believe Gregory and I will have plenty of time to figure some more out.
We were at the park and I saw a sand box that Gregory never goes to play at. Not many kids go to play in the sand box come to think of it. Because it’s dirty? Animals go to the bathroom in there? I know Gregory hates having rocks, sand and dirt in his shoes. Which is problematic when he wears sandals to the park. Yeah. He stops every two steps.
On our walk home I thought of how I always enjoyed playing in the sand and wanted Gregory to play in it to build and mould things. Suddenly it clicked, I could use the water table as a make shift sand box. Now I just had to find sand. No, not sand. Moon Dough. Much more fun, more colourful, and it is a whole day activity from prep to clean up.
How to Make Moon Dough
I used two different recipes to make my moon dough because I realized after making my first batch that I had two problems.
- I wasn’t going to have enough flour
- I wanted to try an experiment with Gregory that could be fun
So here are my two moon dough recipes. I should let you know that when I say ‘coloured chalk’ I mean coloured chalk. I went outside to the sidewalk chalk stash we have and collected some chalk of the same colour. I put in into a bag, took a shovel and broke the chalk inside the bag until it was powder.
4 Cups Flour
1/2 Cup Baby Oil
Coloured Chalk to preference
2 Cups Flour
2 Cups Baking Soda
1/2 Cup Baby Oil
Coloured Chalk to preference
This was a super fun make-it-with-your-toddler activity. The steps are simple, and if you start off picking out the chalk and smashing it into powder in the morning, you’ll be playing before nap time.
Step 1: Mix together flour (and baking soda if applicable) and coloured chalk.
Step 2: Mix in baby oil until moon dough is formed.
Step 3: Repeat until desired colours are made and play.
Yeah. Super simple, super quick. Check out some photos I managed to take while we were making and playing with the moon dough. Scroll below for an excellent (and EASY) experiment to try with your little. Plus a BONUS ourRADhouse vlog so you can see the experiment in action before you try it out yourself.
Recipe Two Experiment
This experiment only works if using recipe #2, for obvious reasons… the baking soda. Did you ever make a science class volcano in school with baking soda and vinegar? No? Me neither. Which is why this experiement was so much fun and why I suggest all parents to get involved with this whole day of sensory play. You can’t say playing with moon dough and making it fizz up isn’t fun.
All you have to do is grab some vinegar and pour it onto your moon dough. Take some eye droppers, cups, measuring spoons, strainers… whatever you can think of that might make it more enjoyable. I saved this bit of play until after nap time. So that when we went back outside to play there would be a new aspect to keep Gregory’s attention. I’m glad I waited, I wouldn’t have ever got him to stop playing and nap otherwise. Check out some of our fun below.
Clean up isn’t so much fun. I mean, I had to grab a garbage bag and scoop out all the sludgy moon dough mess by cup… then by hand because the cup just wasn’t doing the job. But it’s all part of the fun I guess.
I suggest taking your activity table or buckets you played in closer to the hose and rinse it along with any toys you might have played with. Don’t hesitate to get your little to help clean. Them running from the water as it sprays back at them is helping you smile, remember that.
If you leave the leftover moon dough outside and it gets wet, or you’ve used the vinegar and don’t clean up right away, I’m going to go out on a limb and say it’s going to be a b*tch to clean up. I know flour and water makes papermache, so leaving a similar type of concoction outside to the whatever weather is there could be disastrous. Just clean up before you head inside, rinsing off yourself and your little before going inside to shower off the day of play.
If you have any other water table play activities you think we might enjoy, link them or leave some info about it in the comments. There are tons of different recipes available if you don’t like how the texture of mine turns out. If you find a better one and want to shove it in my face, I’ll gladly take your suggestion. Sharing is caring, us moms got to stay RAD and work together.