Magic Playdoh - First Day Fun {Free Printables}

Wednesday, August 7, 2013
Well, this year I got lazy.  I usually make the playdough for Magic Playdough from scratch but I decided to buy it this year because I saw this on Amazon for $10 (with free two day shipping for Prime Members).  I figured by the time I drove to the grocery store and bought what I needed to make it, it would cost about that much anyway.

Click here to see it on Amazon:

If you do Magic Playdough I have some free printables below.  If you don't, YOU SHOULD!!!  It's such a fun first day activity and my students LOVE it!!!  I even have a horror story about the year that I forgot to put the food coloring in some of the playdough balls.....but I won't get into that :)

If you've never done Magic Playdough before, here's how it works:  Roll up some playdough balls and poke a hole in the middle with your finger. In the hole put about 2-3 drops of food coloring and then take a piece of white playdough and cover up the hole.  Don't squeeze because you don't want the food color to show through the playdough.  I then put each ball into a separate quart-size baggie and put the "Magic Playdough" poem label (see below) on the front of the baggie.  Actually I put the labels on the front of the baggies before putting the playdough in, much easier that way.

In class I put the large poem (below) under the document camera and I read it, we all read it and talk about it.  Then I give every student a baggie and tell them not to touch it until I say so.  When they all get their baggies I tell them to go and they squish and squeeze the playdough ball - while it is still inside the baggie (I don't let them take it out until they get home - food coloring stains!).  They are all excited to find that their playdough was "Magic" and they will all have a great year when they see the color change.

Here are the printables I made for this - you can click on these to go to Google Docs and download them if you'd like to use them:

This is the poem I use under the document camera:

Here are the labels I put on the baggies.  These print on Avery 5163 labels (or you could print on paper or cardstock and staple or glue to the baggie).

If you aren't lazy and want to make the playdough from scratch, here's the recipe I have used:

“Magic” Playdough
Playdough Recipe
You will need:
1 cup salt
2 cups flour
2 tablespoons cream of tartar
2 tablespoons vegetable oil
2 cups water
food coloring
What to do:
Whisk together the dry ingredients in a saucepan. Add the “wet” ingredients. Cook over medium heat, stirring constantly until mixture forms into a ball (about 3-5 minutes). Remove from pan on to floured surface. Cool slightly. Then knead it until smooth. Store in ziplock bag or airtight container in the fridge.
How to add the “magic”:
Form the playdough into ball shapes. Poke a hole in the ball and put 2 or 3 drops of food coloring in the hole. Form the playdough back into a ball again, covering the drops of food coloring.


  1. Such a cute idea! My mom used to make play-dough when we were young. I loved playing with it!

    Sara :)
    Smiling In Second Grade

  2. Thank you so much for sharing this; I love this idea. So cute!

  3. Thank you for these! I do Magic Playdoh each year and I LOVE the idea of not making the playdoh! (This time of year is too busy!) How many "chunks" do you think you will get out of the 3 lb. tub?

    1. I was wondering the same thing - I am thinking I will have a lot left over....but won't know for sure until I get it and see! 3 lbs seems like a lot to me.

  4. I did Magic Playdough for the first time on the first day last year, and it was such a hit! This ready made dough looks like a great deal :). Thanks for sharing!!
    My Kinder Antics

  5. So funny. I have been thinking about finally doing this in my classroom for the last 2 days. Thanks for helping me make it happen. Will let you know how it works. I will remember to be sure to put color in each ball. ;)