Thursday, June 6, 2013

Sensory Play - Faux Ice Cream

In my Fave Five of June Post, you may have seen that I listed Silicone Ice Cream Cone Molds as one of my favorite things lately. These things are awesome! I've used them for fill and pour activities, sorting, a memory/matching type of game and just silly pretend play. But, one of the cooler things we have done is just plain ol' fake ice cream.

With summer here, we have been doing a lot of sensory activities outside. We finally broke out the water table and we have been getting our messy play on like Donkey Kong outside as much as we can! Gotta get our Vitamin D in! This Faux Ice Cream is something we do almost every other day! Inside, outside or in the tub, this is a super fun way to get some sensory fun into our day!

To make Strawberry Faux Ice cream, you only need THREE things:
Baking Soda
Hair Conditioner (I used Strawberry Suave)
Packet of Single Serving Pink Lemonade (I used Walmart's generic brand)

I added the packet of lemonade because I wanted the ice cream to be really pink and surprisingly, it made it smell EXTRA SWEET! With activities that pose the possibility of staining clothes, I try to avoid food dye as much as possible!

To make the ice cream, I just eyeballed the ingredients until there was enough conditioner in it to make the consistency of ice cream. I placed it in a covered container and kept in the fridge to chill.

We played with this ice cream in several different ways...

When I gave it to Brady, I gave him the ice cream cones, an ice cream scoop and some regular spoons. He immediately wanted to sink his hands into it! So, following his lead, his therapist did the same and they rolled balls of ice cream and crumbled them back into the bowl. 

Brady and his therapist, Karen, making ice cream balls

When I gave the ice cream to Wes, he immediately went about scooping it into cones. He is really in a "pour and fill" phase. 
Filling his cones! 
One for Wes and one for Mommy

Refilling the cones

Me being me, I tried to incorporate as much conversation and labeling as I could! Wes and I talked about whether ice cream was "hot or cold", "rough or smooth", "light or dark". We also talked about what it smelled like and he said, "Candy!". It DOES smell really sweet. I kid you not, Wes filled and poured for about 30 minutes independently! Perfect time to check my emails across the counter! This was my time to be an armchair parent, for sure! 

I asked Wes if he wanted to see something really cool, and what BOY doesn't say "YES!" to that?! I got a little bowl of vinegar and showed him how to pour some into the cones with his spoon. Fizzy fun, I tell you! Wes immediately took a spoonful and put it in the bowl of vinegar and what a cool fizzy reaction with bubbles!

Filling his cone with "fizzy juice" 
Filling the "fizzy juice" with ice cream

Look at those bubbles!

Having so much fun!

We still had a ton of left over ice cream from this batch, so when I tossed the kids in the bath, I gave them the rest and let them play away with it! They smelled like candy when they went to bed

I have experimented with vanilla (cake mix) and chocolate (hot cocoa mix) but Strawberry is my FAVE! I've even considered making some with those new frosting mix-in's. We've used sprinkles and confetti (from my hole punch) to use as fun condiments! 

Word to the WISE...
I made a batch for Brady's therapist to show the ABA Supervisor when he was here. I thought it would be more fun if it was a little bit more airy and fluffy, so I added a little more conditioner and a splash of water. OOOPS. When Brady got excited he shook his hands in that "OH MY GOSH, I'M EXCITED I MIGHT FLY OUTTA HERE!" kind of way. It went EVERYWHERE. Luckily, when baking soda dries, it vacuums up easily. With two boys, I have had it worst, but I felt horrible for his therapist who thought she made a tremendous mess. My response..."At least it wasn't poop!". And, ain't THAT the truth!

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