If your children have been inundated by the Easter Bunny this year, you might be tempted to either gift some of the chocolate, or store it away for a rainy day. The fact remains you won’t want them to eat it all in one go, so here are 5 ways to use left over Easter eggs- with a twist!
Practise mark making and early writing skills
Stick with me here. Early writing practise is all about making marks and patterns with a variety of objects- fingers, paintbrushes, sticks, etc. Children don’t need to sit down with a piece of paper and a pencil to learn how to write! Lots of other objects can help to improve fine motor skills and often the more tactile the experience, the more they are likely to sit for longer periods to practise.
If you have left over Easter eggs, try melting some (a great opportunity to talk about heat, melting and changes of state from solid to liquid) and spread it thinly over a plastic tray or chopping board.
This post uses icing in the same way and has some ideas for encouraging early writing skills.
Make modelling chocolate
This is a lovely tactile activity that you can easily do at home and one that helps to flex those fine motor muscles too. Mix your melted chocolate with a couple of spoonfuls of golden syrup, a sprinkle of cornflour and a little fondant icing to firm it all up. The result is a wonderfully sensory dough that children can manipulate into all different shapes and sizes.
Play chocolate shops
If you’ve saved chocolate boxes for the children to play with, its time to get them out! Even better if they still have the plastic inserts inside! Alternatively, any variety of cardboard boxes can be used for this activity.
When you have your chocolates in their boxes, you can play shops!
Paint with chocolate
Experiment by mixing your melted chocolate with a variety of materials and using different tools to paint with them. Choose lots of different brushes- paint brushes, wall paper paste brushes etc- and talk about the different textures and effects the chocolate paint makes. Some materials to mix with the paint include:
Use a piping bag as an alternative to brushes so that your little ones can really flex their fine motor muscles. If you paint onto grease-proof paper you can freeze your creations, take photos and print them to display. Here are some more ideas for painting with chocolate.
Make chocolate gloop!
Gloop is a wonderful sensory material and one that never ever fails to mesmerise children. All you need to do to make it is to mix corn four and water until it becomes stretchy gloopy and fun! For chocolate gloop, add some cocoa powder to the mix, and then some chunks (or grated) chocolate for a different texture.
Your gloop can be made to:
Take a look at this post for more ideas on playing with gloop.