Monday, 1 December 2014

Rainbow Rice: A Third World Version

Since I parent in the third-world, I have a gut aversion to using food in play.   All those beans, corn and flour thrown away after a giant sensory tub activity could feed an entire family for a week!

But I couldn't resist rainbow rice: dyeing rice grains with food colouring and alcohol.  This time though, a mess is not allowed.  Each grain is gold.  And we've made our original batch last for 3 and a half years, and counting.  
The first batch we made when Ladybug Girl turned three.  Just eyeball the ingredients in a baggie and let them shake and mash until the colour spreads.  It was was very cool for us to make together.
Practicing some scooping into empty water-colour bottles, too
And the eventual fascination and exploring afterwards
After we got the hang of it, we made bigger batches to mix together:
Irresistible to touch!
We cooked:
We sold:
We served:
We partied!

It's a regular "pantry ingredient" in her pretend cooking area:
Every grain goes back inside the flask

Only the use of rubbing alcohol prevented my husband from cooking the whole lot.  I managed to convince him that it wasn't a good idea.

There's another place where we store rainbow rice - in our DIY sensory tub under our dining bench.
Lift the lid and play anytime!  See how we made this from an old drawer here.

Making it is half the fun.  Our after-work play for the day:

Total control over the green food colouring
And the remnants of our rubbing alcohol
It's coming along
And every grain goes back in!
The story unfolds in her mind and the play keeps evolving:

The antler is trapped and must be saved!

Sometimes I leave a surprise for her to find:
Learning about different kinds of houses in the world.
A game: there were ten pompoms to find with tongs
Simple natural materials to explore when Halloween was in season
A nativity playset last Christmas so she could do some storytelling
Sometimes she leaves surprises of her own:
Her idea: a tombstone back when Plants vs. Zombies 2 was standard conversation at home
But always, always there is this: 

My unusual concern over being careful has rubbed off on her.  Recently we were talking about toys and she finished my sentence with "let me guess... many kids in the Philippines don't have toys?".

So that's how guilt became the necessity of invention.
Cheers for third world - excuse me - emerging market parenting!

We must be appropriately corporate correct at all times.

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