D is for Dough Disco

30th Jun 2015
D is for Dough Disco

At Kids 1st we have a disco every day, but it’s our motor skills, not our dance moves, that we’re developing!

‘Dough Disco’ is a fun activity which combines the use of play dough with a series of hand and finger exercises designed to improve fine muscle control. The movements develop children’s fine and gross motor dexterity, hand-eye coordination and self-esteem.  The overall aim is to ultimately support children’s hand writing skills.

‘Dough Disco’ is part of our daily routine, warming up those important muscles in our hands, arms and shoulders in preparation for a busy day at nursery! Each child is given a ball of play dough then sits in a circle while music is played.  To the beat of the music, the children copy the staff member as she demonstrates various ways to manipulate the play dough, exercising as many as those important muscles as possible.  The children love the activity and look forward to making their ‘hands dance’ each day.

Try It!

If you would like to hold your own ‘dough disco’, here is an easy, no cook, play dough recipe and a few basic exercises.

You will need:

1 cup of cold water
1 cup of salt
2 teaspoons of vegetable oil
3 cups of flour
2 tablespoons of corn flour
Food colouring


Gather together all your ingredients.
Put the dry ingredients in a bowl and then slowly add water.
Mix until it forms a nice dough.
It should now be easy to pick up and mould – add more flour if it is too sticky and more water if it is too dry.
Knead it well with your hands to get all the food colouring to blend in.
Then the fun begins! You can store your play dough in an airtight container when you have finished playing.
You can add food colouring to your play dough and even a sprinkle of glitter to make it sparkly. Add a drop or two of essential oils to make it fragranced or grains of rice for texture. Have fun experimenting with different additions.


Pop on your favourite tunes and give these simple exercises a go.

Smack it:              Using the palm of your hands, flatten the dough into a pancake shape.

Squeeze it:             With the dough in one hand squeeze hard.

Roll it:                    Using flat palms roll the dough between both hands forming a sausage shape

Ball it:                    Using both hands, roll the dough into a ball shape.

Dive in:                  In turn, plunge each individual finger into a ball of dough


To see an example of ‘Dough Disco’ go to: www.youtube.com/watch?v=i-IfzeG1aC4