Glow in the Dark Play Dough Silly String Dough

We’ve been having so much fun lately making all sorts of  play dough.  There’s so much to do with play dough…from pretending, to working on fine motor skills…play dough is one of our favorite ways to play.  And the fun ways to make play dough; Oh boy things can get crazy in the play dough workshop (aka my kitchen).  We’ve mixed up dough with everything from crayons to cola.  
This time, we were on a mission to create our very own Glow-In-The Dark play dough.  This was fun!!

Make your own glow in the dark play dough using silly string! It really glows! This would be fun for a Halloween party.

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Silly String Glow in the Dark Play Dough

This little experiment turned into a fun adventure with the kids.  We brainstormed all kinds of ways to turn our play dough into glowing dough.  Little Guy’s idea of lightning bugs was thoughtful, but a little yucky. And cruel to glowing bugs.  So where to start with making glowing dough??  We packed up the minivan and headed off to Target.

The sales clerk gave us the eyebrow when we said we needed anything that glowed.  But this was a mission for creativity.  We grabbed up glow in the dark stickers, duct tape, nail polish, and silly string.  

We were looking for things that could be added to dough to make a glowing dough.  While doughs that require a black light for luminosity are very cool, we don’t have a black light.  And, lots of parents out there don’t have the budget for a black light, so glowing dough was the way to go for us.

We started our experiments with the nail polish.

Please don’t make play dough with nail polish. Won’t glow.  And the fumes, yikes! Round two.

Silly String Play Dough~

We started by mixing up a batch of our homemade play dough recipe with a small modification.  We were out of cream of tarter, so I substituted a half cup of flour for the cream of tarter.  I also cut the recipe in half.  This is important for the glowing of the dough, as we only used one can of silly spray.  More dough would require more silly string for a glowing shade.  Our play dough ingredients were:

2 cups flour
3/4 cup salt
1 and half cup water
1 Tbsp oil

It’s important to note that different ingredients and temperatures/humidity will result in different play dough consistencies.  The most important part of this dough recipe is the kneading.  You’ll need to knead it a lot for smooth play dough.  Repeat that: Need to knead. Need to knead. 😉 If your dough is too sticky, add more flour.

This is a no-cook dough.  The warnings on the Silly String say to keep away from heat.  I wan’t taking any chances with warm dough, so no-cook it was. Mix together the ingredients for the dough and knead, knead, knead.  When you’ve got a nice play dough consistency, it’s time for the fun part. Silly String!  (This link is not the brand we used, but should work.  We used a bottle of 3 oz glow in the dark Silly String found at Target).  Little Guy waited very patiently for this part.  If patiently means reminding mom that we need to spray the silly string, then it was patiently. 😉

Spread the dough out on wax paper and spray!  We sprayed to whole bottle onto the dough without any attempts to spray each other.  Success.

Roll the dough edges into the center and mix in that silly string.  we did not have any dying of skin with the silly string, but feel free to wear gloves if you like.  The nice part about the silly string is the non-toxic notice on the side.  Non-toxic=awesome.

We did not add any coloring to our dough.  The greenish shade of the silly string dough was enough, but it would be fun to experiment and see what a bright green food coloring would do to the dough.  You might want to add another bottle of silly string to your dough for a more vivid glowing dough.  If you add more silly string, you’ll need to add more flour to take away the stickiness.

Once, mixed take that dough into a dark closet to check it out!  I did notice that our dough was more vivid if we “charged” under a light first.  This stuff was very cool!  The kids were pretty impressed with the glowing dough.

NOTE~ The “glow” is not extremely strong.  This dough would not be able light your way on a dark night.  It will be visible in a dark room.  It will not enable you to see across the room.  It will glow enough to see.  It will not turn your dark living room into a glow-in-the-dark disco party.  It will last about 2 weeks in a sealed plastic bag or container, with “charging” to get the glow.  It will not make a great flashlight on Halloween.  It will be very fun to play with!
Play dough recipe for glow in the dark play dough. This recipe uses Silly String! Too cool!
And when the dough gets stuck to the couch, you can now see it in the dark. Yay! 

This post is part of the 12 months of sensory dough series


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