Monkey was given a set of Moon Dough for Christmas and I am a little embarrassed to say that we only got around to experimenting with it at the weekend. If I am honest I had reservations, I am not a lover of synthetic sensory play preferring the real option. We have made cloud dough before from baby oil and flour so I was prepared for this not to measure up. However I was really happily surprised.
We set it up outside on our tuff spot as the weather was lovely and I didn’t know what to expect. Monkey had chosen to use his construction vehicles with the Moon Dough. Initially it came out in little squares which were soft and squishy. Its hard to explain the texture, but it is very pleasant to the touch. You can rub it between your fingers as you would when you are making shortbread and it becomes finer.
When you mix the colours together I was expecting it to turn into a muddy brown, but even though they were mixed each kept to itself so you would just end up with different layers. Monkey took to filling up the dumper truck and using it to transport the different colours around. He also used the roller to squash the moon dough and roll it paper thin. It was really surprising how thin we could get it.
It kept him entertained for about 45 minutes which is no mean feat for a three year old. When he had finished playing with the construction vehicles he took the little squares that were still in one piece and pretended they were presents. We found a little tupperware box to put them in and started collecting them. When we had run out Monkey requested that I made some more. Modelling the Moon Dough is a bit tricky as it doesn’t hold together as well as play dough so it was easier for me to do it than him. Older children would probably be fine with it.
I have left it out for a couple of days on the tuff spot, Monkey refused to let me put it away so he could play with it when he came home from nursery. I was a little concerned that it may dry out, but it hasn’t despite being in the conservatory. Its a great hit with him and I can see us buying more when this eventually runs out. Considering I was only expecting it would only last for one play its still going strong.
Pros – bright colours that stay reasonably independent when mixed, so soft to the touch, kept Monkey assumed for a good length of time, versatile, multiple play opportunities and it doesn’t dry out.
Cons – I can imagine that it would not mix well with carpet, its no good for kids which are still mouthing (recommended age is 3+) and its not a natural play material which would normally be my preference.
However when time is limited and you want something which you can take out of the packet it and it be ready to play with then this is a really good option – as far as Monkey was concerned.