Outer Space Playdough

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Big Brother is currently obsessed with learning about space.  He has all 8 planets (plus Pluto and its moon) memorized in order and knows individual facts about each one.  I honestly didn’t know most of this information until he started showing an interest.  He waivers daily between wanting to be an astronaut, farmer, or doctor when he grows up.  :)

We decided to make some Outer Space Playdough after I saw the idea for “galaxy play dough” from Fairy Dust Teaching (via Pinterest).   This was lots of fun for both of the boys…they loved getting to play with it and add the planets, stars, and an occasional Angry Bird.  :)

Below you will find my go-to playdough recipe.  It is a little more work because it has to be “cooked” over the stove, but the last time I made it, it was good for over a year when stored in a Ziploc bag!


Recipe for Outer Space Playdough:

2 1/2 cups flour
1 1/4 cups salt
1 1/2 Tablespoons Cream of Tartar
2 1/2 cups water
5 tablespoons oil
Black food coloring
Glitter (you could even try glow-in-the-dark glitter)
Optional:  Lavender Essential Oil (I hear lavender is calming and we can use all the calm we can get in our house)  :)


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 1.  Mix the dry ingredients in a medium pot:  2 1/2 cups of flour, 1 1/2 cups of salt, and 1 1/2 tablespoons cream of tartar.




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 2.  Add the liquid ingredients:  2 1/2 cups of water and 5 tablespoons of oil.



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 3.  Add the food coloring and essential oil, if you choose.  We kept adding food coloring until we got the color that we desired.  I added about 4 or 5 drops of essential oil and the scent is light and is not overpowering.




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 4.  Stir over medium heat…and stir…and stir some more!




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 I had a good little helper!




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 At first, the mixture will be very goopy and sticky.




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5.  As you stir it over medium heat, it will thicken and congregate to the middle of the bowl.  Keep “stirring” as best you can until the mixture is no longer super sticky to the touch.




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6.  Drop it on the counter and cover it with a dishtowel until it is cool enough to knead.



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 7.  Add your glitter!




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8.  Knead some more!




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To make our solar system, we used marbles and pom-poms to represent the sun and all the planets.  We also used a skewer stick to make the orbit rings.



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This Space book has been a great way to capture of Big Brother’s interest and learn more about outer space!

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Big Brother was super serious about making sure all of the planets were factually represented…



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…and Little Brother was bound and determined to add a little make believe play.  :)




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  1. says

    This is such a great idea!! So creative!! I can imagine my girls having a blast (no pun intended- :) )with this! Thanks so much for sharing!

  2. says

    Thanks so much for sharing. We’re currently spending the month studying astronomy. Our planets week is next week. I’ve pinned this so I don’t forget. A couple of quick questions-Your recipe mentions 1 1/4 cup salt, but then when you give the direction you mention 1 1/2 cups. Just wanted to clarify which one it is. :) Also, when you make the play-dough without the food coloring, does it end up white or grey or does it turn brown? I’m trying to make dough to use to make the moon week.

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