Monday, May 20, 2013

Corn Silk Color and Shape Sensory Bin

You're going to think I've really lost it now, but you know my theory about using perfectly good food as a sensory material (If you don't, you can read it HERE, where I directly contradict myself by using spaghetti as a sensory tool), so I am constantly on the lookout for ways to use food extras. Anyway, when I was shucking corn for an impromptu BBQ, I started eyeing the silk. My husband could see the wheels turning from a mile away and said, "Can you at least finish shucking it before doing whatever your about to do with it." (Sorry hunny). So I did my duty, all the while making sure to save every strand of that corn silk.

It was so cool! Long, shiny, rubbery, sticky, stringy...perfect for sensory play! The best part is, it would have gone right in the garbage anyway, so why not explore it a bit first, right?

When I finished extracting the silky strands from the corn husk (which was super easy by the way), I decided they needed some color. I separated them into four different bowls and mixed in a few drops of food coloring. I used rubber dishwashing gloves to do this because food coloring really gets in the skin and is terrible to clean. It rinsed right off the gloves with water. Let the color dry a bit or you will be stamped with food coloring as soon as you touch it due to the non-absorbent nature of the silk. I let it stand for about an hour and it was good to go. To spice things up even more, I added shapes that corresponded with each color in the bin. Now it was time to play!

Note: The strands break fairly easily and you DO NOT want to be cleaning this stuff up off your floor or your carpet, so take this activity outside.

Kz pulled the strands and mushed them around, looking at the web of silk that stuck between his fingers. He flung large piles of silk and giggled when they landed on the grass (relieved to have his hands free again). He searched for his shapes...

And worked hard to free them from the corn silk, too.

What crazy things have you been using for sensory play?

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  1. Corn silk? Now THAT is an original idea! :)

  2. featured you this week on the kids co-op

  3. Cool idea! Whooda thought? Thanks for sharing.

    1. I know, kinda weird but totally worked! Thanks, Pam :)

  4. Now that is one idea I've never heard of before!!! So creative! (good tips on the colouring and the not using this on carpet too!)

  5. This is way cool! We've played with corn silk a little, and I've wondered about coloring it, but it ended up compost before I could open my science lab "door". Nice to know it dries well. Can't wait for fresh corn season again to get a resupply on my stock! :-)


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