Wonderful Tuff Tray Potion Making | Life Skills


Welcome to another blog by me- Mother Tuffa! Now a regular with Little Learners UK! Check out my first blog to find out a bit more about me! 

Today I am focussing on telling you about potions! Any form of potion making is a hit with my children! I like to try vary it up a little, but honestly I could put the same things out each time and they would be more than happy! 

Here are a few ideas to hopefully inspire you to get potion making! 

Coloured Potions 

This was my first ever potion set up- before I got my stand for my Tuff Tray too! I mixed paint with water to create a variety of coloured water in little tuppawears. I then added some pipettes, old medicine syringes and some spoons. The last thing was my trusty recycled plastic containers and some empty spice jars. Both of my children were entertained for at least 45 minutes- always a great result once I have set up a tray. Easy, simple set up for maximum play time. Once I had modelled this with my 2 year old, she played independently just like my 6 year old. 

Introducing a measuring cylinder 

During lockdown, one of the tasks for my son’s school work was to look at measuring capacity. Obviously it was time to crack out the measuring cylinders! We had never used the measuring cylinders before so I thought we would have a play with them, thinking about how to fill them and use a funnel accurately first. My idea was to work towards accurately using the measuring cylinders to make potions with specific measurements, but practise makes perfect. On the tray I put measuring cylinders, funnels, a range of pipettes and spoons accompanied by coloured water and we were good to go! My 2 year old, this second time round, was very good at using the pipettes too. Great fine motor skills! 

Following a Recipe

Moving on from introducing the measuring cylinders, we progressed to using the cylinders to measure accurately with my 6 year old. I wrote a simple potion recipe on the tuff tray. My son was required to follow the instructions to make a potion using the measuring cylinders to measure out the coloured liquid. It worked a treat and he loved it! My daughter simply joined in making potions using the pipettes and spoons I had put out, as well as the funnels. I always try to make sure that both my children can access the activity despite their age difference. This activity ended up very wet and messy as it started to pour with rain half way through! Nothing a couple of umbrellas and coats couldn’t handle! 

Investigating Primary Colours!

To mix it up slightly, this potion making activity focussed on colour mixing. It gave the opportunity for lots of discussion, colour recognition for my 2 year old and a better understanding of how to make and mix colours. I used only primary colours – blue, red and yellow water, which as usual, were made by mixing water with a little paint. I found some lovely colour mixing cards on @twinklresources -which I laminated and taped to the tray. I added some glass jars, various pipettes and a couple of spoons for mixing. My 2 year old needed a little support on how to mix the colours but by 6 year old was fab! We discussed the secondary and tertiary colours we made and it was lots of fun! 

Accurate measuring

To develop measuring further I placed jars on the tuff tray and put a line on each jar. I added some pipettes, spoons, measuring cylinders and funnels. Next was coloured water and the children needed to fill the jars to the lines and then measure how much liquid was in each jar. In this activity I had my sister’s children as well as mine! They are 9 and 13. The older 3 did this very well, whilst my 2 year old played mixing the colours and pouring the liquid between the containers. They all loved doing this! it is wonderful to watch how the different aged children interact. 

No matter how old the children are, I think everyone loves playing with water. I will admit, as much as I don’t kind messy play, I always stick to doing potion making outside! And a little rain never hurt anyone! I always tell my children that skin is thankfully waterproof so it doesn’t stop the fun! I think sometimes it makes it even more fun! 

I’d love you to check out my account, and hopefully find some new ideas! I am always rambling on in my insta stories, and if inspire or entertain one person, my job is done! I look forward to seeing you over @mother_tuffa 

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