At first thought traveling with a tin of play dough might sound like a bad idea. Won't it get all over everything? Won't you leave a trail of (albiet amazing) play dough everywhere you go? While it may not be the right choice for every child, given their age or play style, you may be surprised how wonderful a travel tool it can be!
Our family has been traveling quite a bit recently, and for anyone who is on the go with toddlers even a trip out to a restaurant requires some materials to keep little hands and imaginations busy. I tossed a mini tin of ZDough in my toddler's backpack a while ago, and it has come in awfully handy! Here are a few tips and tricks to enjoying ZDough whether you're out for dinner or traveling away from home:
1. Only bring it out when the conditions are right. Ask yourself, "Is this a formal setting (think white table cloths...) where play dough will not be appreciated?" If so, keep it tucked away. But if you're eating at a casual restaurant or are on a long flight then I say go ahead! Those of you who have ZDough at home will know that the vibrant colors will not come off on hard surfaces and a quick swipe of the table with your napkin will leave it ready for the next customer. The only things that play dough does not play well with are fabrics (like table cloths) or paper (like menus). Plastic or wooden toys work very well in the dough.
2. Think about how your child is likely to play with it. Does he still like to pick it up and drop it on the floor over and over and over again (just to see you pick it up?) Again, this may not be the right time to bring out your ZDough. But if your little one is old enough to become engrossed in his play and can keep the dough on the table then it could definitely buy you some uninterrupted time to say eat your food...while it's hot.
3. Consider bringing a tool or two. Z's backpack has a mini tin of ZDough and a simply plastic cylinder that she uses as a rolling pin. She's even figured out how to use the tin itself as a tool! The lid can be taken apart to reveal a round ring which can be used as a cookie cutter and a plastic disk that is perfect for flattening little balls of dough and cutting it into strips. Leave it to children to find the best ways to play!
I hope this has given you some good ideas about how to use your ZDough even if you're away from home. Happy travels!