Littles love play dough, and I like using it to sneak in math & literacy into the classroom. Play dough is a great tool to engage learners while they strengthen fine motor muscles, build creations, and learn new academic skills. Check out this list of my favorite play dough toys & tools for preschool, pre-k, & kindergarten students to learn, grow & have fun!
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Favorite Play Dough
This is my favorite store-bought play dough! The colors are bright and vibrant, and it seems to last if the lid gets put on correctly.
Play Dough Trays
These trays work great for making an individual play area for students. Each person can keep their accessories, tools, and play dough in one area. They also help clean-up time go smoother.
I use these to make my play dough trays for all my themes and holidays. I place play dough in the center spot and fill the outside with accessories, manipulatives, and tools.
Traditional Play Dough Tools
This set of traditional play dough tools is great for little learners since they are smaller in size and lightweight. This is my absolute favorite play dough tools set of all time! It is sturdy and it will last a very long time.
These mini rolling pins are great to have in your play dough area. They are colorful and cute and work well for preschool, pre-k, or kindergarten students’ small hands. Little learners have small hands so they need small tools to fit their hands.
I like to add fun tools to my play dough area; these are always a hit with my little learners! Students roll them over the play dough, and it leaves fun textures and designs in the dough.
I let students use these plastic safety scissors to cut their dough into shapes and pieces. They won’t hurt themselves with these safety scissors, but they will cut right through play dough.
These uppercase dough stamps work great for little learners to practice spelling their names and words or practice letter identification.
Grab the lowercase set of dough stamps here.
Here is another option of letter stamps that work with play dough. I like this set because they can also be used with ink and stamped on paper, so you get multiple activities out of one manipulative.
Grab the lowercase set of rubber stamps here.
Students can use these alphabet lacing beads to squish into the play dough while they spell words, their names, and so much more! These are my absolute favorite letter manipulative because you can use them for so many things! I have two sets of the uppercase letters because we are always using them throughout the classroom.
Grab the lowercase lacing beads to complete your alphabet set!
Cookie Cutters & Baking Cups
Make your own letters and numbers with these cookie cutters that are great for play dough.
Want more cookie cutters than just letters and numbers? Grab this huge set of cookie cutters that comes with letters, numbers, shapes, and other cutouts. There are some for holidays and themes too!
Grab this set of holiday cutters to have play dough shapes for Thanksgiving, fall, Halloween, and Christmas time.
I like these nesting cookie cutters to get lots of sizes in several different shapes. Students can explore size and shapes with these cookie cutter sets!
These 3-inch metal tart molds are great to have in the play dough center, especially when you have a baking theme in the classroom! My students would call them mini pie pans.
I love these flexible silicone baking cups to give students the opportunity to create fun “baked goods” in the play dough area. These also work great for sorting cups in your sensory bins!
Give students these molds to help them create fun shapes and creations with their play dough.
These silicone shapes cups are some of my favorites since they are flexible, colorful, and come in so many shapes. Students can have fun exploring play dough.
Give students lots of beads to press into their play dough to decorate their creations or to practice patterning, counting, and sorting. Don’t worry about the dough getting stuck in the middle because if it does, it will come out once the dough dries.
My students like to use these mini craft sticks to add details to their creations or use them to support structures they are creating.
I like to add pipe cleaners, pom poms, and googly eyes to my play dough trays, and this set is perfect for that. It comes with so many colors and fun options to keep students engaged and wondering what they will have next time!
Mini Objects & Figures
These gems are fun to add to the play dough area for students to create with. They are hard plastic and are easy to remove when they are squished into the play dough.
Grab this fall mix for play dough add-ins like pumpkins, acorns, and leaves. The set comes with varying sizes and colors so sorting, counting, and patterning would be so much fun with these.
This set of mini erasers has lots of shapes and figures to help you make play dough centers for lots of themes and holidays!
Get this set of animal tubes to give students an opportunity to use their imaginations with their play dough. They can create habitats, zoos, and so much more with this fun add-in.
Students can count, sort, and create with these fun fruit counters. There are over 100 pieces! Fun to use with so many themes… health/nutrition, fall (apples), summer (strawberries), farm, and more!
I love these family counters for play dough time. These family counters are so much fun to give preschool, pre-k, and kindergarten students to grow their imaginations. Students can make playdough places for the people to go or live!
Grab your little learners’ attention with these fun mini vehicles. These are great for a transportation, construction, or community helpers theme.
Play dough centers can be so fun for students while they increase their fine motor muscles, grow their imaginations, and work on academic skills! I love sneaking academics into sensory areas, and play dough is a great tool for that! I hope this list of my favorite play dough toys & tools makes your planning easier.
Check out this Play Dough Mat Bundle for printable learning mats for the alphabet, numbers, and shapes.
Check out the Play Dough Activity BUNDLE for tons of resources for Routines, Task Cards, Literacy, Math, SEL, and MORE!
Check out the Seasons Fine Motor Mats Bundle that includes pom poms, pattern blocks, play dough, linking cubes, and geoboard mats!
Don’t forget the Holidays Fine Motor Mats Bundle to get everything you need to have fun with fine motor tasks!
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Want to check out more of my favorite things for little learners? Check out my Favorite Things Blog Series with over 15 different favorite things lists (and growing)! If there are any favorite things for a theme you need, just let us know so we can create it for you.