Learn how to make colored rice for sensory play – it’s easy, and less messy than the coarsely ground flour that we sometimes use for taste safe sensory play.
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The rice that I used for this post was originally intended for I Spy jars for my kids. I made the jars, but they were not happy (to put it lightly) to discover that I intended to keep the small animals I had put in the jars in there permanently. So we removed the small plastic animals, built a habitat for them instead, and decided to create a different use for the rice. But, I’m getting ahead of myself! Here is how we made colored rice in the first place:
How to Make DIY Colored Rice for Art Projects and Sensory Play
We divided the rice into four plastic jars (yes, we like Nutella in this house!):
Note: You can substitute vinegar for Purell if you prefer. It will still set the dye.
The kids admired the resulting colors as we waited for it to dry:
Then we left them to dry overnight:
Rice set with Purell dries very quickly. If you substitute vinegar, you may need to spread it out on a tray to dry overnight.
The colored rice was ready for an “art project” the next day. I say “project” because this consisted of Johnny making a Big Mess while Emma carefully glued one grain of rice at a time onto her piece of paper. If I were to do this particular project again, I would have the kids use liquid glue bottles instead of glue sticks – the grains of rice stuck to the glue sticks too easily.
Fun things to do with Colored Rice
We have a LOT of rice left, so if you have other activities we can use this for, I’d love to hear! Here are some activities I have come up with so far:
- I plan to let Emma make a colored rice layer jar, and then….
- Use the mixed-together rice for sensory play.
- Make temporary rice art.
- Put together that I Spy bottle I was planning to make in the first place!
Have you tried making your own colored rice before? What did you do with it after you made it?
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