Friday, February 17, 2012

Art And Play: The Nature Way - Sand

It's that time again! Art And Play: The Nature Way is back with another installment! This time it's all about sand. Unfortunately, we don't live close to any great naturally occurring sand. R would really love it if we did! When we think of sand, we immediately think of the beach, which happens to be R's favorite place in the world.

Once we surprised him with a small vacation at the beach. We didn't tell him where we were going. We just loaded up and drove the six hours to his most coveted vacation spot. He was really surprised! Now, anytime we say we have a surprise he immediately asks if it's the beach. Sadly, not all surprises are the beach. We were reminded of that fact just last week, when we had a small surprise for him that immediately got his hopes up. So I thought I'd bring a little bit of beach fun to our yard.

I made moon sand. It's great for sand castles and such when it's winter and there isn't a huge body of water nearby. It's crumbly, yet moldable. And it's a lot of fun! I went back to my last post about homemade moon sand and decided to do some more experimenting. I came up with a new recipe that we liked a lot. I hope you like it too.

Moon Sand Recipe

What you need:
4 cups play Sand
2 cups corn starch
1 cup flour
1.5 cups warm water

What you do:
Blend together the dry ingredients and then slowly add the warm water. I added half a cup at a time and mixed. This allowed for me to make sure it was well mixed and the right consistency.

The Final Result:
I think the final result will depend on the type of sand you use. If your sand is really coarse you might want to add more flour. I think the flour softened ours up a bit. Our end result was still a bit different from the commercial variety of moon sand, but it was our favorite homemade kind thus far. It made a good bit and was much cheaper.

The Play

I set the moon sand out in a bin on a marvelously sunny day. I gathered a few of R's beach toys and just let him play. He felt the sand squish between his fingers. He made moon sand pizzas. He used his imagination and had fun. It was really simple and child led. And without me prompting, he even proclaimed, "This is just like the beach!!"

After we got through playing in the sand, we went inside and continued our beach play with a bath filled with all of R's under the sea toys. He had a nice time splashing and playing with his sea creatures, and it really added to the experience.

I keep rediscovering that it really doesn't take much to make my child feel special and happy. This was a really easy activity to provide and it was very well received.

You don't have to take it outside though. Moon sand is a lot of fun indoors as well! If you're worried about the mess you could always set your container on a plastic tablecloth from the dollar store. After the play just pick up the tablecloth and dump the mess. It also vacuums up quite easily, and since it was so cheap to make you don't have to worry about it being wasted.

And be sure to check out Dilly-Dali Art to see their creative (and beautiful) sand art. 

Art And Play: The Nature Way

Did you miss the fun last time? We had a lot of creative fun with rocks.

What's your favorite way to have fun with sand?


  1. I can't wait to try this! I have lots of sand left over, I'm going to clean out the cloud dough bin and replace it with Moon Sand!

  2. I will have to make this once we move away from the beach and into the mountains. I am sure they will really miss sand then. We love to make sandcastles.

  3. Totally trying this! Even though we are lucky enough to live near the beach the kids (and I) will love this!

  4. Rosie loves cloud dough. We have not done moon sand yet. I am going to try your tweaked recipe. Thanks for sharing! Great post!

  5. I don't think your little guy minded one bit that it wasn't the real fact, I think he may have thought it was even more wonderful that you made him a beach in his own back yard! Great outdoor fun! -heather

  6. We have a lot of leftover sand too, Aleacia. We'll be giving your sand art a try! Your sand looked a lot silkier than ours. You might not need any of the flour. Ours was pretty grainy.

    Thank you for stopping by, Megan! Let me know how you like it. You could even use beach sand since you are lucky enough to live at the beach. :) Did you see Dilly-Dali Art's post? She has even dyed beach sand before. Which I think sounds pretty awesome.

    Thank you, Growing a Jeweled Rose. I hope you like it!

    Thank you so much for reading and commenting, Heather. I've realized that it doesn't take much to make him happy. As long as I'm showing him in little ways he's loved, he's pretty happy. I stopped by your blog, but I couldn't comment. I plan on emailing you when my internet isn't acting up as much. :)

  7. And this would be perfect for sand castles, Phyllis! The mountains definitely have their own appeal, but I'm sure the beach will be missed. I hope you love playing with moon sand in the mountains!

  8. cheers for sharing this recipe with everyone, I have made cloud dough but like this idea of moon sand. Thank-you for also linking up this week & I'll share this on my FB page too. Kierna

  9. My boys had a blast with moon dough recently and I can only imagine what they will do with the moon sand. They love the beach...this will be a huge it. Thank you for posting the recipe I can't wait to try this.

  10. What a great idea to take the moon sand outside to play beach!! Thank you for linking up to the Outdoor Play Party!

  11. That looks like so much fun! What a great experience for your little guy :)

  12. My girls LOVE sand play too, but I've never tried moon sand. After reading this, I think we'll give it a try. Thanks! Btw am loving the Art & Play series, can't remember if already told you that!

  13. I need to try this -- looks like so much fun!!


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