So I would have to say my favorite sense is the sense of taste because yumminess brings me pleasure (technically it is the sense of smell that makes food taste so good, so smell and taste are tied as favorites). Apparently this is also true for my little 20-month-old because she feels the need to put everything in her mouth (Do they ever grow out of this?). It astounds me that she immediately rejects my petition to put seasoned chicken or cooked peas in her mouth but has no problem whatsoever sucking on rocks or swallowing dirt clods. As I have pondered more about the purpose of sensory play, I suppose her incessant desire to swallow the world makes sense. As she feels and sees new textures and objects around her, naturally she wants to experiment with her other senses and try to further understand them. This object looks interesting, it feels interesting, does it taste good? Understanding her potential logic in exploring the world through her sense of taste allows me to maintain a higher level of patience as I fish potentially hazardous objects out her mouth on almost a daily basis.

When I saw this recipe for sweetened condensed milk fingerpaint, I knew this would be the perfect sensory project for my daughter as it involves both touch and taste. I have been anxious to let my daughter fingerpaint or sculpt with playdough, but anytime we attempt such an activity, it usually turns into a let-me-see-if-I-can-get-this-into-my-mouth-without-mom-seeing game. With this edible paint, she could make her masterpiece and eat it too.

We started with a can of sweetened condensed milk and food coloring. Yep that is it. Super simple.

We talked through the colors and then started painting. The paint is heavy so I recommend using cardstock. I didn’t have any on hand, so I just disassembled a folder. It took her a minute to dig in, but she got the hang of it pretty quickly.

She had a blast smearing and splattering. It didn’t take very long before she put her fingers to her mouth. I saw her glance up at me to see if I would try and stop her. I didn’t and she tasted her fingers and let out a loud, “Yuuuummmm!” I got a kick out of that.

I thought the project would end quickly after she discovered the paint actually tasted good and I would have jump in to protect her from a sugar high. Not the case. After a few finger lickings, she went happily back to decorating her paper.

It looked like so much fun I thought I would let my 4-month-old get in on the mess, too. I dipped his feet into the paint and smeared them across the paper. Honestly he didn’t seem too fond of the whole experience, so I eventually abandoned the idea. In a few months, he’ll be all over it.

I will definitely do this project again. The paint is awesome, especially for young toddlers. It was easy to wash off and completely nontoxic (unless you consider a sugar rush toxic). Plus the art turned out pretty good. Can anyone else see a future Jackson Pollock in the making?

What sensory projects have you done that appeal to the taste buds?

 

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One Response to Sensory Project: Sweetened Condensed Milk Fingerpaint

  1. Husband says:

    I want to try this! Let’s make sure I’m around the next time we do this.

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