Halloween is coming and it’s a great time of year for babies and toddlers. There is so much to explore! Halloween offers young children the chance to learn about big, scary things in a safe way. There is also new language to explore and lots of bright, vibrant colours. Perfect for sensory play! So why not get pouring, scooping, sprinkling and shaking with some Halloween sensory rice? I have the perfect DIY recipe for you! So keep reading to make your own Halloween Sensory rice for spooky play with babies and toddlers.
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What is Sensory Rice?
Sensory Rice is just plain, old, dried rice that has been dyed to give it some exciting colour! Dried rice is a brilliant play material as it’s small, safe, non-toxic, versatile and cheap to buy! You can do plenty of play trays with plain white or brown rice. But giving it a bit of colour can really liven up your play setup. From spooky Halloween colours to sweet pastel shades for Easter – sensory rice can fit whatever theme you like!
How do i play with Sensory Rice?
I first used sensory rice when I discovered the Happy Hooligans recipe and made their pastel version for Easter activities. It lasted 6 months before I needed to make a second batch! Sensory Rice is so versatile that it can be used for a variety of play setups. My toddler loves exploring sensory rice with tubs, scoops, spoons, bottles and shapes. You can even make DIY music shakers with recycled plastic bottles that are clean and dry. Just make sure you keep any small lids out of your child’s reach or cellotape them onto the bottle to make sure they are safe.
My first setup for our spooky Halloween Sensory Rice was a colour exploration tuff tray. I set up orange and black Halloween cookie cutters, bowls, scoops and toy bugs to play with. I did this on a lovely Autumn day, so we wrapped up warm and headed out into the garden to play.
so What is Halloween Sensory Rice?
Halloween Sensory Rice is perfect for spooky play with babies and toddlers. It’s actually made up for four separate batches of rice. The orange rice represents the orange pumpkins. The black rice represents night time. Purple and green are vibrant, spooky colours that will spark your child’s imagination and can represent a monster’s fur, ghoulish slime, or even freaky frogs! All you need to make it is plain white rice, distilled white vinegar and gel food colouring! Then just follow my recipe below.
How do I make the Halloween Sensory Rice?
The recipe below provides all the details you need to make your own Halloween Sensory Rice. I have written the recipe to make one batch of a single colour. So you will need to repeat it four times to create the multi-coloured spooky batch which includes orange, black, purple and green. I also got creative with the recipe to get a frog-spawn effect for my green rice. Instead of basmati rice, I used Arborio Risotto rice. It’s slightly more expensive but since we had some in the cupboard, I just went for it!
- Ziplock freezer bag
- Baking tray
- half tsp measuring spoon
- 1 cup measuring spoon
Ingredients (per colour):
- 3 cups of plain white rice
- 1.5 tsps of white vinegar
- 1 tube of gel food colouring
Method for one colour of rice:
- Fold down the edges of your ziplock bag so that it is easy to pour into. Measure 3 cups of plain white rice and pour it into the bag.
2. Pour 1.5 tsps of distilled white vinegar into the bag of rice. Now add 1 tube of gel food colouring into the bag. Seal the bag and shake thoroughly.
3, Use your hands to squish the ziplock bag and evenly distribute the colouring and vinegar throughout the rice.
4. Once all of the rice is fully coated, gently pour it out of the bag and onto a baking tray. Leave the tray on a sunny window sill or another warm place out of reach of children.
How do I store my Halloween Sensory Rice?
The rice will eventually dry out and the colour will set. I usually leave mine for a day or two. If your child does manage to get their hands on it before the rice is dry, don’t panic! The food colouring will rub off on their hands but it can be washed off.
Once the rice is dry, gather it back into fresh zip lock bags for storage. You could also store it in another type of air tight container, such as a Tupperware or glass mason jar. The rice keeps well and doesn’t take much effort to preserve. My first batch lasted 6 months, and dozens of play setups, before I finally popped it in the compost bin.
Are you ready to play?
So there you have it. Super simple, inexpensive and exciting Halloween Sensory Rice for spooky play with babies and toddlers. Why not use your sensory rice for a bit of potion making and practice pouring it into bottles? Or try making a spooky Halloween picture using stencils instead? However you choose to play, I hope you have lots of fun with your Halloween Sensory Rice. Tag me in your creations @athomewithmrsblake and remember to share your play ideas to our AHWMB community group on Facebook.