Mess: digging for dinosaurs in jello

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The boys have been on holiday this week, so I’ve been looking for activities to reduce the number of times I hear the words ‘I’m bored… what can I do now…’ from the 6yo! My biggest success was some fun with jello!

DINOSAURS IN JELLO: a fun and easy messy play activity using jello and plastic toys, perfect for toddlers (and bigger kids!).

For my first foray into jello play I kept it very small scale!

I gathered together some bugs and mini dinosaurs to ‘hide’ in the jelly. I then made up batches of blue and green jello. I just used ordinary jello, which was perfect for this activity as it went suitably sloppy after they’d been playing with it for a bit, but a friend has subsequently mentioned ‘finger jello’ to me (which goes rubbery?) that I must investigate too…

1. Preparing the Jello

I filled the two tubs with jelly and popped them in the fridge over night.

2. The Jello is Ready

I had mentioned to the boys that I was making jelly for them to play with, so the first thing the 6yo asked the next morning was if he could see it! As soon as they had eaten breakfast they ran off (unprompted) and got themselves painting aprons (baby/toddler ones that are far too small for them!) so they could get started :)

3. Ready to Go

They began fairly tentatively, and of course the first thing they did was taste the jelly! They loved digging the bugs and dinosaurs out of the jelly and discovering which ones I had used!

4. Taste Testing the Jello

As they got more confident (and realised that I wasn’t going to tell them off for making a mess…) they started to really play with the jelly, get handfuls of it and feel it, squish it, spread it – throw it at each other!?

5. Squishing the Jello

Then of course, their sister’s curiosity got the better of her, and she just had to join in. She loved the feel of the jelly (and the taste!).

6. Spreading the Jello

Then the 6yo decided it would be funny to feed her jelly – and she returned the favour!

7. Feeding the Jello

The boys had a lovely time – the 4yo was very proud of his slightly blue hands…

8. Blue Hands

They even thanked me for letting them ‘get messy inside’ and told me how much they’d enjoyed it. We will definitely be doing this again, on a much bigger scale and with more hidden surprises! And once the tuff spot arrives I will let the wee girl get really stuck in!

I’m linking up with Jennie at Edpsire for the wonderful Messy Play for Matilda Mae linky, click on the badge below to have a look at some of the other great posts – and perhaps get some inspiration!

Edspire Messy Play




11 thoughts on “Mess: digging for dinosaurs in jello”

  1. Oh your photos have made me smile!I love this idea,the colours were so bright and attractive and it looked like the kids had a whale of a time!Popping over from #messyplatformatildamae

  2. Oh bless them, that looks great fun! Wish we could get blue jelly over here too! Not sure what finger jello is, but the last time I used jelly in messy play I just added less water as I wanted the baby to be able to pick it up. Worked a treat!

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